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Sumida River Fireworks Festival

Epic fireworks with equally as epic crowds. ?

Breathtaking fireworks are synonymous with summer in Japan, but the Sumida River Fireworks Festival has the biggest, most spectacular of them all. This stunning pyrotechnic display of legendary proportions sees over 20,000 fireworks launched in 90 minutes!

Make sure you arrive early, and by early we mean before 5 p.m.

Over 1 million spectators congregate on nearby streets, buildings, parks and even the river itself, fighting for the best views of the show.

Sumidagawa Fireworks and Tokyo Skytree

Photo by: Ling Jin Glorious Tokyo Skytree in the background.

The festival takes place annually from 7 p.m. to 8:30 p.m. on the last Saturday of July and is generally a maelstrom of shoulder-to-shoulder crowds. What do you expect of the most popular fireworks display in the country?

Which fireworks festival is better?

edogawa fireworks fest
Dating all the way back to 1733, the Sumida River Fireworks Festival was originally a way to memorialize those who died in the Kyoho famine the previous year.

An intense competition soon developed between two rival fireworks manufacturers, each trying to outdo the other with their displays. This tradition continues today.

Where to spectate

You have plenty of options to choose from when it comes to watching the explosive display, which is set off from two locations — one near the Taito Riverside Sports Center and another near Komagata Bridge.

Photo by: waseda_university Amazeballs.

The roads around the area are closed off in the evening and are lined with food and drink stalls (and toilets) catering to festival-goers. Check this map of the area (in Japanese only) from the Sumida River website for a lay of the land.

One of the best vantage points is Sumida Park but naturally, it’s extremely packed. Shiori Park and the north part of Oyokogawa Water Park are good alternatives.

Sumidagawa Fireworks boat

Photo by: winingdiningintokyo View the fireworks like a boss from a riverboat!

Another option is to join the queue to walk across one of the bridges during the display. The views from here will be unbeatable, however, you’ll only have about five minutes to enjoy them.

To make the most of the festival, try watching from Tokyo Skytree or taking a riverboat that will take you right into the heart of the action. Advance tickets are required though, and have a hefty price tag with boat rides ranging from ¥15,000 to ¥40,000!

Sumida River Fireworks

Photo by: Dick Thomas Johnson Good luck getting a good spot!

You could also try getting reservations at a restaurant, hotel or rooftop terrace event in the area – but good luck if you haven’t made a reservation months in advance. Still, being that this is the best fireworks display in Tokyo, it’s definitely worth a go at least once.

Not a big fan of crowds, but don’t want to miss out on the summer fireworks fun? Check out these not-so-crowded fireworks festivals!


edogawa fireworks fest

Which fireworks festival is better?

The Edogawa Fireworks Festival is a display to rival the Sumida River Fireworks. Which one will you choose?


Things To Know

Arrive early!

When we say the festival attracts some serious crowds, we don’t mean that lightly — we’re talking over 1 million people! Festival goers often lay out a tarp on the ground to reserve their viewing spot hours (even days) in advance so wherever you choose to watch from, make sure you arrive early. By early we mean before 5 p.m. We can’t stress this enough.

How To Get There


Japan, 〒111-0034 Tōkyō-to, Taitō-ku, Kaminarimon, 2-chōme−18−9 浅草文化観光センター

By train

The fireworks are set off from two different sites along the Sumida River. The nearest station is Asakusa, which can be reached via the Asakusa line, Ginza line and Tobu Skytree line. Bear in mind that Asakusa Station will get very crowded, so consider using Tawaramachi Station on the Ginza line (especially on the way home).

Where To Stay

Kaminarimon Ryokan
  • 1-18-2 Asakusa, Taito-ku, Tokyo, 111-0032 Japan
  • ¥30,130 - ¥98,325
  • 4.43/5 (711 reviews)
  • 0.1 km
The Gate Hotel Kaminarimon by Hulic
  • 2-16-11 Kaminarimon, Taito-ku, Tokyo, 111-0034 Japan
  • ¥13,526 - ¥78,212
  • 4.26/5 (1,291 reviews)
  • 0.1 km
APA Hotel Asakusa Kaminarimon
  • 2-14-1 Kaminarimon, Taito-ku, Tokyo, 111-0034 Japan
  • ¥10,200 - ¥44,500
  • 0.1 km
Hotel Gracery Asakusa
  • 2-10-2 Kaminarimon, Taito-ku, Tokyo, 111-0034 Japan
  • ¥19,800 - ¥58,000
  • 4.57/5 (162 reviews)
  • 0.1 km
APA Hotel Asakusa Kaminarimon Minami
  • 2-9-1 Kaminarimon, Taito-ku, Tokyo, 111-0034 Japan
  • ¥7,700 - ¥39,400
  • 0.2 km

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