Christmas is an event that has been celebrated in countries worldwide in a variety of different ways. This has even expanded in recent times to countries that are not connected to the origins of the holiday, such as Japan. Although Christmas is seen as a Christian religious holiday in other countries, Christmas in Japan is a different kind of celebration entirely!
Even non-religious Japanese people enjoy Christmas, seeing it as a time where couples go out for dates and families enjoy delicious and unique season-limited food at home! This is what led to the famous association in Japan of Kentucky Fried Chicken and Christmas meals! Elaborate Christmas themed decorations, illuminations and markets pop up across the country around this time as well!
Japanese Christmas Date Events
In Japan, it has been a long pastime for lovers to spend a romantic time together on Christmas. On the other hand, being dateless on Christmas also carries the heavy impression of being a loser! The standard plan for couples is to go out for a night on the town, enjoy the Christmas festivities, dine at a fashionable restaurant, and stay the night at a hotel. Christmas never originally had this connection to romance, but this has regardless become the way of thinking in Japan!
Japanese Christmas’ KFC Connection
It has become a recent tradition to eat fried chicken during Japanese Christmas celebrations. The most popular of the brands used for this purpose is Kentucky Fried Chicken. It is said that this tradition, which KFC does not have in the United States, is the result of a promotional campaign in Japan that has been extensively developed and updated since the 1970s.
However, a number of people have been getting sick of eating the same brand every year. Knowing this, other franchises and convenience stores have been getting into the Christmas season chicken competition as well. Many people are planning to enjoy the holidays at home this year, so it may be interesting how this affects the ‘chicken war’!
Creative Christmas Cake Designs!
During Christmas season in Japan, it is common to see salespeople dressed as Santa while selling special cakes at the entrance of department stores nationwide. The classic style for these Christmas cakes is a white cream cake topped with strawberries and decorative Santa dolls. This tradition has also been changing with the times however, and lately, it is possible to buy very specially-crafted designs from sellers ranging from department stores and hotels to more luxury cake shops. Some of the cakes will get you into the Christmas spirit with just a glance! These are usually sold out on the day they go on sale, so it is typical to make a reservation one month in advance.
Jersey Cream and Strawberry Shortcake
Christmas Assorted Cake
Bourg de Noel Phrase Citron
Japanese Illuminations are a Couple’s Paradise
The many illumination displays during Christmas make for an amazing date for lovers looking for something to do. The Japanese have made Christmas illuminations into something of a competitive art, with displays being compared and ranked yearly countrywide!
Some of our currently recommended displays for you to check out more about can be seen here, such as the bubbly and unique VenusFort Christmas illumination in Koto-ku, Tokyo, and the Marunochi Illumination in the Marunouchi section of Chiyoda-ku Tokyo, currently the 5th top ranked illumination nationwide! Click the pictures for more info (Japanese only)!
Special Japanese Christmas Goods
Interested in the style that Japanese design brings to the Christmas season? Some of the Christmas-themed goods below might help to give a unique twist to your holiday plans!
Pink-White Lace Christmas Tree
A beautifully stylish 75cm tree that can function easily as either a main or side tree in any space, such as a single room or a corridor. Make sure to use safety pins or similar tools when pinning ornaments to this tree!
Mini LED Light Christmas Tree
This is an even smaller tree than the last one with a total size of 30cm. This makes it perfect for smaller living spaces or for those who would like a minimalistic feel to their decorations! The attached LED lights also make it a breeze to start your own illumination at home!
Japanese Style Christmas Tree Greeting Card
A special greeting card for the Christmas and end-of-year season! Impress your overseas friends with the wonderfully Japanese-style Christmas tree featured on this card, and make one of your friends or family members’ next holiday season one to remember!
The two Buyee stores below are just some of our recommendations for places to begin your holiday shopping!