On the third Monday of July each year, the Japanese celebrate what is known as Marine Day (”Umi no hi”). This is a relatively new national holiday to celebrate the honor of the ocean and wish for the prosperity of Japan as an ocean country.
In the past, the sea has played a very significant part of Japan’s economy. Marine Day was originally designated in 1941 as the anniversary of the day when Emperor Meiji returned in 1876 from his boat trip to Hokkaido after an inspection.
When it was became a national holiday in 1996, Marine Day fell on July 20, but it has since been moved to the third Monday in July to create three-day-weekend, which is part of a movement called the “Happy Monday System” where a handful of designated holidays were moved to Monday.
Aquariums, swimming pools, and other facilities related to water or the ocean make their facilities available to the general public at low discounts and also arrange special events on this day.