Tobu Railway Co. Ltd, the biggest private railroad company in Kanto, Japan, offers routes to five special winter illumination events to spend the year-end holidays. Limited to winter season, the displays start in late October and run till March 2017.
The light displays are located in areas along Tobu Railway’s massive rail network through Tokyo and four neighbouring prefectures. Travellers can make their way to Tokyo, Tochigi, Saitama, and Miyagi all within a day or overnight trip to witness the spectacular sights. The journey can start from Asakusa or Tokyo station.
Ashikaga Flower Park – A Light Flower Garden
This is the biggest illumination event in Kanto area with 3.5 million lights. It is recognised as a Japan night view heritage site where the entire park is decorated with colourful lights. The “Miraculous Great Wisteria” is a reproduction of an enchanted wisteria trellis using illumination to present an impressive sight that looks like a real wisteria trellis swaying in the wind.
At the “Flower Fantasy – A Light Flower Garden”, the entire park is decorated with colorful lights and visitors can enjoy various types of illumination. The “Miraculous Great Wisteria” – a reproduction of an enchanted wisteria trellis using illumination – presents an impressive sight that looks like a real wisteria trellis swaying in the wind. Furthermore, in addition to the “Light Rose” which has 5,000 roses and the “Light Wisteria” that befits the concept of a garden of light flower Garden, a “Light Water Lily” has been added this year. An aurora created using lights will also appear in the sky above the “Snow World” showing an image of the perennial children’s favorite, Santa Claus, flying across the sky.
Event dates Oct 22, 2016 (Sat) – Feb 5, 2017 (Sun)
* Closed on Dec 31 (Sat)
Time 16:30 – 21:00 (opens until 21:30 on weekends and holidays)
Location Ashikaga City, Tochigi
About 30 mins by shuttle bus from Tobu Isesaki Line “Ashikaga Station” (about 70 mins from Asakusa Station)
* The shuttle bus operates only on weekends and holidays from Nov 19, 2016 (Sat) to Jan 9, 2017 (Mon).
Admission fees Adult 800 yen (S$10.40)
Child 400 yen (S$5.20)
Tobu World Square Illumination – Simultaneous light-up of 102 world-famous buildings
102 world famous buildings from 21 countries, skillfully reproduced on a 1/25 scale including 46 buildings registered as UNESCO World Heritage Sites will be decorated by illumination. At “Tobu World Square”, 102 world-famous buildings from 21 countries are skillfully reproduced on a 1/25 scale, including 46 buildings registered as UNESCO World Heritage Sites. Every building will be illuminated this winter! Landmarks such as the world’s tallest tower TOKYO SKYTREE, the supertall skyscraper “TAIPEI 101” in Taiwan were added to the collection last year. The Eiffel Tower, Duomo in Milan and the pyramids of Egypt among many others will be lighted up simultaneously, creating a dream-like, fantastical setting.
Furthermore, the “Tobu World Square” is located near Kinugawa Hot Spring, one of the prominent hot springs in Kanto. Visitors are highly recommended to combine the illumination event with a relaxing stay in one of the hot spring inns in the magnificent Kinugawa Valley where they can enjoy warm soothing baths.
Event dates Daily from Nov 5, 2016 (Sat) – Mar 5, 2017 (Sun), Mar 11 (Sat) – 12 (Sun), Mar 18 (Sat) – 20 (Mon), and Mar 25 (Sat) – 26 (Sun)
Time 16:30 – 19:30
* There may be changes on some days.
Location Nikko City, Tochigi
About 5 mins by bus from Tobu Kinugawa Line “Tobu Kinugawa Onsen Station” (about 2 hrs from Asakusa Station)
Admission fees Before Dec 1 (Thurs)
Adult (junior high & above) 2,500 yen (S$32.50)
Child (age 4 & over) 1,200 yen \ (S$15.60)
Dec 1 (Thurs) and later
Adult (junior high & above) 2,800 yen (S$36.40)
Child (age 4 & over) 1,400 yen (S$18.20)
For park entry after 16:30
Adult (junior high & above) 1,500 yen (S$19.50)
Child (age 4 & over) 1,000 yen (S$13) (each ticket comes with a 500-yen (S$6.50) coupon that can be used within the park).
Kinugawa Hot Spring
Tobu World Square is located near Kinugawa Hot Spring which is one of the prominent hot springs in Kanto. Visitors can combine the visit to both attractions.
Enjoy a relaxing stay at Kinugawa Hot Spring together with “Tobu World Square Illumination”
“Kinugawa Plaza Hotel” offers accommodation plans that include admission tickets to Tobu World Square.
Visitors can take slow relaxing hot spring baths and enjoy exquisite cuisine prepared using fresh ingredients in this hotel located amid the magnificent landscape of Kinugawa Valley. The hotel can be accessed in 15 mins by car from Tobu World Square, and offers accommodation plans that include admission tickets to the theme park.
Rates for 1-night accommodation start from 12,960 yen (S$168.48) (Dec 1, 2016 (Thurs) – Mar 31, 2017 (Fri)).
We have three convenient discount passes that will help visitors save on transportation cost when travelling around in this area.
・ The “ALL NIKKO PASS” (adult 4,520 yen or S$58.76) is a 4-day pass that offers unlimited travel on trains and buses within the Nikko/Kinugawa area and savings of 1,600 yen (S$20.80).
・ The “2 DAY NIKKO PASS” (adult 2,670 yen or S$34.71) is a 2-day pass that offers unlimited travel on trains and buses within the Nikko/Kinugawa area and savings of 550 yen (S$7.15).
・ The “KINUGAWA THEME PARK PASS” (adult 7,380 yen or S$95.94) is a 2-day pass that offers unlimited travel on trains in the Nikko/Kinugawa area and a circular bus service that covers Tobu World Square and Edo Wonderland (Nikko Edomura). The pass includes admission to the theme parks and provides savings of 3,830 yen or S$49.79.
DISCOUNT PASS URL: http://www.tobu.co.jp/foreign/en/pass/
Tobu Zoo Winter Illumination – With a parade by real animals
At Tobu Zoo in Saitama, a LED screen more than 20 metres in length will take centre stage, accompanied by 2 million LED lights decorating the park. The “Rhythmination” of lights to computer-generated images on the screen will be a sight to behold!
A “starlight zoo parade” where animals move around the park together with illumination cars and a “reindeer event” during the Christmas season will also be held. Now in its 8th year, the “Tobu Zoo Winter Illumination” will see the park decorated by about 2 million LED lights. Furthermore, the gigantic LED screen that first appeared last year has been increased in size to more than 20 meters in length, and there will be a “Rhythmination” show of lights in which LED light bulbs spread all over an open plaza will light up simultaneously in rhythm to the dynamic CG images displayed on the LED screen. Furthermore, a “Light Sakura” created by illumination will bloom on the cherry blossom trees that surround the Swan Pond at the East Gate end of the park, and the amusement park area will also be lighted up in bright and glamorous colors. A “Starlight ZOO Parade” in which animals move around the park together with illumination cars and a “Reindeer Event” in the Christmas season will also be held.
Event dates Nov 12, 2016 (Sat) – Feb 12, 2017 (Sun)
* The park will be closed on some days during this period. As the dates when this event is held are irregular, please check the website for details.
Tobu Zoo URL: http://www.tobuzoo.com/global/english/
Time 17:00 – 20:00
Location Minami Saitama-gun, Saitama
About 10 mins walk from Tobu Skytree Line “Tobu Dobutsu Koen Station” (about 35 mins from Asakusa Station)
Admission fees Night Admission
Adult (junior high & above) 1,000 yen ($S13)
Child (age 3 to primary school) 500 yen (S$6.50)
Illumination Pass (park admission + unlimited rides)
Adult 2,500 yen (S$32.50)
Child 1,800 yen (S$23.40)
Night Ride Pass (available for purchase inside the park, unlimited rides)
Adult 1,500 yen (S$19.50)
Child 1,300 yen or (S$16.90)
* Tickets will be available for purchase after 15:00
Sendai Pageant of Starlight – the City of Trees
600,000 LED lights are used to decorate 160 zelkova trees and the rows of trees stretching for 800 metres will be totally wrapped in light.
A pedestrian walkway runs through the centre section of Jozenji-dori so that visitors can enjoy walking right under the illuminated trees.
Tokyo Skytree Town – World’s tallest tower turned into the world’s tallest Christmas tree
There will be special lighting to make Tokyo Skytree look like the world’s tallest Christmas tree. Various spots in Tokyo Skytree Town will also be decorated with about 400,000 candle colour lights giving visitors a visual treat.
The lower section of the Tokyo Skytree tower will be used as the main screen for the first time and visitors can enjoy a visual display that takes advantage of the structure of the tower body. The illumination event is held at Jozenji-dori, a road lined with zelkova trees that are a symbol of Sendai – the City of Trees. 600,000 LED lights are used to decorate the 160 zelkova trees, and the rows of trees stretching for 800 meters will be totally wrapped in light. A pedestrian walkway runs through the center section of Jozenji-dori so that visitors can enjoy walking right under the illuminated trees. During the illumination event, a re-lighting event called “Starlight Winkle” will be carried out 3 times a day so that visitors will have more opportunity to enjoy the wondrous moment when the lights come on. The warm and soothing lights that decorate the City of Trees in a beautiful way help to create a romantic atmosphere during the Christmas season.
Event dates Dec 9 (Fri) – Dec 31 (Sat)
Time Sun – Thurs 17:30 – 22:00
Fri/Sat/Dec 22 (Thurs) 17:30 – 23:00
Dec 31 (Sat) 17:30 – 24:00
Location Jozenji-dori, Aoba-ku, Sendai, Miyagi
JR “Sendai Station” → Sendai Subway Nanboku Line “Koutoudai Park Station” (About 1 hr 35 mins from Tokyo Station)
[Recommended hotel information]
During the illumination event, a guidance map of “SENDAI PAGEANT OF STARLIGHT” (available in English, traditional Chinese, simplified Chinese, and Thai) will be distributed at Sendai Kokusai Hotel, which has also prepared an accommodation plan that comes with a gift of an original blend of tea called “Scent of Trees” which was created based on the image of Sendai and the “SENDAI PAGEANT OF STARLIGHT.” Please use the conveniently located Sendai Kokusai Hotel which can be accessed in a 15-min walk from “SENDAI PAGEANT OF STARLIGHT” or about a 10-min walk if the subway is used.
Sendai Kokusai Hotel Pageant of Starlight Special Plan URL: http://hotel.travel.rakuten.co.jp/PLAN/912/3849606
“TOKYO SKYTREE TOWN Dream Christmas 2016”
The world’s tallest tower will be turned into the world’s tallest Christmas tree! A powerful projection mapping show will also be held.
In addition to special lighting to make TOKYO SKYTREE look like the world’s tallest Christmas tree, various spots in TOKYO SKYTREE TOWN will also be decorated with about 400,000 candle color lights.
For the annual projection mapping show, the lower section of the TOKYO SKYTREE tower will be used as the main screen for the first time this year, and visitors can enjoy a powerful visual display that takes advantage of the structure of the tower body.
Event dates Nov 10 (Thurs) – Dec 25 (Sun)
* Projection mapping will start from Dec 10 (Sat).
Time Sun – Thurs 17:30 – 22:00
Fri/Sat/Dec 22 (Thurs) 17:30 – 23:00
Dec 31 (Sat) 17:30 – 24:00
Location Sumida-ku, Tokyo
Immediately after alighting from Tobu Skytree Line “Tokyo Skytree Station” (about 3 mins from Asakusa Station) and “Oshiage (SKYTREE) Station” on various lines.