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How long is a summer break in Japan?


Summer break is a highly anticipated time of year for students around the world. In Japan, summer break is a time for relaxation and rejuvenation before the start of a new school year. In this article, we will explore how long the summer break is in Japan, as well as some of the cultural traditions and activities that take place during this time.

History of Summer Break in Japan

The tradition of summer break in Japan dates back to the Meiji era (1868-1912), when the government introduced a system of compulsory education. The school year was structured around the agricultural calendar, with a long summer break to allow students to help with the harvest. Today, the summer break remains an important part of Japanese culture, with many families taking vacations or participating in traditional events.

Japanese Snack Box

Duration of Summer Break

Summer break in Japan typically lasts for around six weeks, from late July to early September. The exact dates can vary depending on the region and school, but most schools follow a similar schedule. During this time, students are free from their regular classes and have the opportunity to pursue other interests.

Activities during Summer Break

There are many different activities that take place during summer break in Japan. Some families choose to travel to other parts of the country or even overseas, while others stay closer to home and participate in local festivals and events. Many students also attend summer camps or take classes to learn new skills.

Obon Festival

One of the most important events during summer break in Japan is the Obon festival. This is a time to honor ancestors and loved ones who have passed away. Many families return to their hometowns during this time and participate in traditional rituals such as visiting gravesites and lighting lanterns.

Firework Displays

Another popular tradition during summer break in Japan is watching fireworks displays. These events are held throughout the country and attract large crowds. Many people enjoy dressing up in traditional yukata (summer kimono) and gathering with friends and family to watch the colorful displays.

Beaches and Mountains

With its long coastline and mountainous terrain, Japan offers many opportunities for outdoor activities during summer break. Many families head to the beach to swim and relax, while others go hiking or camping in the mountains. Popular destinations include Hokkaido, Okinawa, and the Japanese Alps.

Summer Festivals

Summer festivals, or matsuri, are a colorful and lively part of Japanese culture. These events feature traditional music, dancing, and food stalls selling local specialties. Some of the most famous festivals include the Gion Matsuri in Kyoto and the Tenjin Matsuri in Osaka.

Summer Food

Summer is a time for enjoying refreshing foods that help beat the heat. Some popular summer dishes in Japan include cold noodles such as soba and udon, as well as shaved ice desserts like kakigori. Grilled meats and vegetables, known as yakiniku, are also a favorite during summer.

Summer Homework

While summer break is a time for relaxation, many students in Japan are still required to complete homework assignments during this time. This includes reading assignments and math problems to help students stay on track academically.

Back-to-School Preparations

As summer break draws to a close, students begin preparing for the start of a new school year. This includes purchasing new uniforms and school supplies, as well as reviewing materials from the previous year. Many schools also hold welcome ceremonies to introduce new students and teachers.


Summer break in Japan is a time for rest, relaxation, and cultural traditions. Whether you are traveling to new places, participating in local festivals, or simply enjoying the outdoors, there are many ways to make the most of this special time of year. While the break may be brief, the memories and experiences will last a lifetime.

What country has the longest summer break?

Italy grants its students the lengthiest summer break, lasting for 13 weeks, which is the longest among all countries. Portugal and Greece come next, with 12 weeks of vacation.

How long is a Japanese school year?

In Japan, the academic year starts in April and ends in March, and is split into three semesters. The first semester begins in April and goes until around July 20, with summer vacation for most students lasting from July 20 to August 31. This is the traditional academic calendar for elementary, junior high, and high schools in Japan.

Does Japan have a 6 day school week?

In Japan, the typical school week runs from Monday to Friday, but some schools also provide optional classes on Saturdays. Due to the emphasis on academic success, many Japanese students opt to attend these classes, making it seem like the school week is extended to six days.

How long is summer break in Korea?

Korean students typically have a summer vacation of only six weeks, from mid-July to late August. However, university students tend to travel throughout the season, keeping trains and buses busy. It is important to book accommodations early in popular destinations like Busan’s beaches, which can become extremely crowded between June and August.

How long is USA summer break?

In the United States, summer break usually lasts for 8-9 weeks and typically begins either in late June through early September or late May through mid-August.

What country has a 6 day school week?

In the developed world, Israel is unique in that children attend school six days a week. This information was reported on November 12, 2019.

COVID-19 Impact on Summer Break in Japan

In recent years, the COVID-19 pandemic has had a significant impact on summer break in Japan. Many traditional events and festivals have been canceled or scaled back to prevent the spread of the virus. Some schools have also implemented online or hybrid learning options, which can make summer break feel less like a break for students who are still required to attend classes.

Future of Summer Break in Japan

Despite the challenges posed by the pandemic, summer break remains an important part of Japanese culture. As the world continues to adapt to the new normal, it is likely that traditional events and festivals will return in full force. However, there may also be changes to the way summer break is structured and how students are able to spend their time off.


Summer break is a cherished time of year in Japan, offering students and families the opportunity to relax and enjoy traditional cultural events. From participating in festivals to exploring the outdoors, there are many ways to make the most of this special time. As we look towards the future, it is clear that summer break will continue to evolve and adapt, but its importance as a time for rest and rejuvenation will remain unchanged.

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