Summer has been insanely hot this year, espeically for a pasty British person, trying to avoid the sun and the humidity has been almost impossible, so in the end I gave up and tried to enjoy Summer as much as I could. This month I have been to two Fireworks Festivals in Tokyo. The first was Sumida River Fireworks Festival, one of the busiest festivals in Tokyo. Over a million people attended this event, as it was the first one since Covid 19 started. We were a little worried about the crowds and we decided to go to a train station that was quite far away from the main area of the river, then we walked along the river until it started to get busy, thats when we stopped walking and just enjoyed the show from a quieter place. The fireworks were great, we had a clear view of one set of fireworks, and a half view of the other set. After the show we slowly made our way back to the quiet train station and avoided all the crowds entirely, we got on a quiet train, found a seat easily, and headed to get food somewhere in Shinjuku, a suprisingly easy and stress-free festival experience.
The second fireworks festival I attended was the Arakawa Fireworks Festival in Itabashi, which was slightly more chaotic. As there are only a few stations available to go to when travelling there, this time we couldn`t avoid the crowds, it took 15 minutes to leave the station and was very stressful, however, after getting out of the station, we went to a street food stall, got some yakitori, and headed to the river walking area to find a nice spot to sit down. Much quieter than Sumida, and in my opinion better quality fireworks, we had a great time, until that is, the fireworks suddenly stopped, and we realised that a fire had started, the organisers had lit a fuse over some dry grass, which had ignoted a grass fire in the shrubbery around the area. This unfortunately put and end to show. The fire engine came and put out the fire, while all of the spectators watched. This arguably was just as interesting and exciting as the fireworks would have been and I think everyone still had a fun time.
I hope to go to one or two more festivals before summer is over, and hope to eat many snacks from the street stalls.