Fireworks have a long history in Japan and are an integral part of many summer festivals. The Sumidagawa Fireworks Festival in Tokyo dates back to the Edo period and is one of Japan’s most famous firework displays. Every last Saturday in July, colorful fireworks are launched from both sides of the Sumida River. The spectacle is best seen from close to the river, although it can get very crowded, and the best spots are often taken hours in advance. Still, the festive atmosphere, with people dressing up in yukata and picnicking in the streets and parks, is worth it. After enjoying the festival from the ground in 2013, I wanted to take some better pictures from higher up this year.

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