Many are surprised to learn that Christmas is celebrated in Japan, but the icons and trimmings of the holiday are found in most households (but without the religious attachments shared in many other countries). The Buddhist monk Hoeiosho brings presents instead of Santa Claus. Instead of Christmas Carols, the Daiku is the choice of holiday music (known as Beethoven’s Ninth Symphony) and fried chicken has become the traditional meal of the Christmas holiday in Japan thanks to the clever insight of a KFC store owner. *
January 1st is the major holiday in the island nation; as described in this video from Epcot’s Holidays around the World, shot by ITM’s JeniLynn, we learn of the Japanese celebration of New Year’s – a several day festival, and the legend of Daruma.