The perfect place to spend a winter’s night!

Just because the holidays are over doesn’t mean there aren’t any more beautiful light setups to admire! In Japan they’re usually huge productions called “Illuminations” that last for months, and involve thousands of twinkling lights in a myriad of colors strung throughout gardens and into shapes of all kinds to make a beautiful illuminated wonderland.

One that isn’t to be missed this is at Sakai Green Museum Harvest Hill, which is a huge park in Sakai City in Osaka Prefecture. With five different areas made up of moving animals, glittering fields of lights, interactive play spaces, and more, Wonder Night Hill is Osaka’s biggest illumination event this year.

The first area is called “The Ice Age of Light” (“Hikari no Ice Age”), which takes you back in time to a winter wonderland. Rainbow-colored reindeer and animatronic penguins, polar bears, and even giant mammoths await you!

In the interactive “Sparkling Playground” (“Kagayaki no Play Hiroba”), you can experience a combination of lights and sound. In addition to a 20-meter (65-foot) dawn redwood tree that’s fully lit up, there’re light-up see-saws and chairs and even musical pathways that sing notes as you walk.

An enormous wax myrtle tree is the focal piece of the “Huge Tree Plaza” (“Taiju no Hiroba”), and every inch of every branch has been covered in glittering lights. This is a rest area connected to a food court where you can sample tasty snacks.

The fourth area is “Candy Road” (which goes by the same name in Japanese). It’s made up of a road lined on either side by trees decorated with pretty multi-colored lights, and it makes for a very whimsical walk.

And last is the “Glittering Bug World” (“Kirameku Mushitachi no Sekai”), where you can come face-to-face with huge rhinoceros beetles and praying mantises in a twinkling forest. This area will probably be a hit with bug-loving kids, because these huge bugs are actually robots that move! Entering this zone will probably feel like diving into the world of a picture book.

All-in-all, though, this looks like the kind of event everyone can enjoy. It’d make a great date spot, family outing, or friend date. There’s plenty to enjoy, even solo!

Wonder Night Hill will be open on Fridays, Saturdays, and Sunday nights through January 28, from 5:45 to 9 p.m. Tickets cost 1,500 yen (US$10.30) for adults (junior high school age and older), 800 yen for children (four and over), and 500 yen for dogs, who are also invited to enjoy the festivities so long as their vaccinations are up to date.

Why not add this to your list of winter adventures this year? And don’t forget to add the Flower Garden of Lights in Tochigi too, which looks gorgeous!

Event information
Wonder Night Hill / ワンダーナイトヒル
Address: Osaka-fu Sakai-shi Minami-ku Hachigamineji 2405-1 Sakai Midori no Museum Harvest Hill
大阪府堺市南区鉢ケ峯寺2405-1 堺・緑のミュージアム ハーベストの丘
Open Fridays, Saturdays, and Sundays until January 28
Open 5:45 p.m.-9 p.m.

Source, images: PR Times
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[ Read in Japanese ]