Japan celebrates Marine Day on the third Monday of July. This holiday is designed to direct attention to the great blessings and economic prosperity that Japan has derived from its surrounding oceans over the centuries.
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Marine Day was first introduced in 1941 to commemorate the daring journey of a past Japanese Emperor, Emperor Meiji, around the islands of Japan in a steamship back in 1876. But the real purpose of the day was to honour Japans’ relationship with the sea, even if the date chosen had patriotic and historic reasons behind it.
At first, Marine Day called Marine Memorial Day and celebrated on 20 July. But later it was moved to the third Monday of July and shortened in name to just “Marine Day”. It was the first summertime holiday on the calendar in Japan and came right at the end of the rainy season. This makes it a popular time to head to the beaches as well as play various water sports.
There are also special events at various aquariums throughout Japan on this day. And many people participate in mud-ball throwing, which involves slinging balls of mud full of microorganisms at the surf so that it will aid in decomposing built up “sea grime”.