College student, 21 (Japanese)
I think the best fireworks display in Japan is in Nagaoka, Niigata Prefecture. Even though it is not the biggest in Japan, the huge round fireworks let off there are very famous and attract people from all over the place. I’m looking forward to seeing the Nagaoka fireworks this year.
Insurance company, 45 (Japanese)
The display at Lake Suwa in Nagano Prefecture is the best by far. The surrounding mountains magnify the booms of the 40,000 fireworks released each August, which in terms of numbers makes it the biggest fireworks festival in Japan. And the setting is just fantastic.
Office worker, 30 (Japanese)
I like the Itabashi fireworks festival in Tokyo because it is a joint event with Toda city, across the Arakawa River in Saitama Prefecture so, on the same day, I can see both displays even if I just go outside to see one. This year it will be on Aug. 3, a little later than the big ones in Tokyo.
Teacher, 41 (American)
Any fireworks display that is on the water — either alongside a river like the Arakawa and Sumida displays — or in a bay such as Tokyo Bay. The reflection of the bursts on the water is beautiful. Plus, it tends to be cooler near the water on those hot summer nights than it would be on land.
University student 22 (Japanese)
I don’t remember how beautiful the fireworks were as I was so young when I last went, but I remember the overall buzz created by the crowd at the Tokyo Bay display, so for those looking to experience both fireworks and crowds on a muggy summer evening, I recommend heading to Odaiba.
Designer, 29 (American)
I haven’t really been to many Japanese fireworks festivals so I am not too sure, but I do know that Yokota [U.S. air base] has a really good 4th of July display to celebrate U.S. Independence Day, and it can even be enjoyed by people outside the base from special viewing areas.
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IN FIVE EASY PIECES WITH TAKE 5