New Year’s is the most important festival/holiday of the Japanese year. It’s like Christmas and Thanksgiving all rolled into one. This is the time when families gather to feast and visit their local temples and shrines to pray for good fortune in the coming year. Depending on the weather, there may be a lot of people wearing their traditional kimono. Or none. Just about everyone around goes to a temple and a shrine. Lots of things are happening, and it’s often visually appealing, a great opportunity for interesting photos.
Last year, we stayed near our place and went for the Joya-no-Kane (Sacred New Year’s Bell Ringing) at the Chishakuin Temple. The tradition calls for the bells to be rung 108 times, the number of our sins, but people are lining up for their turn to ring the bells as many temples will allow everyone a chance to do so, even if it exceeds the number 108.
It started to rain slightly just before midnight and this enabled me to get the reflection on the ground.