I have never seen so many Pikachus in my life. Giant Pikachus, tiny pikachus, dancing Pikachus, Pikachus on stilts, Pikachus with water guns, cuddly Pikachus, Pikachu hats, Pikachu posters, Pikachu everywhere!
As luck would have it we happened to be in Tokyo for the final day of the Pikachu Outbreak festival in Yokahama. Alex’s face lit up when he found out. I knew that this was non-negotiable. I wasn’t complaining however, I was intrigued and thought this would be a great way to end off our Japanese adventure.
We arrived at the port of Yokahama and immediately saw the Pikachus. It was raining and we needed to find a map to try and plan our visit. A backpacker at the hostel had assured us that there were maps and guides being handed out constantly. This was sadly not the case and it took quite a while to obtain one. One we had one as well as two incredibly cool Pikachu headbands to wear, we headed to our first event which was a dance in a mall. Alex had also rediscovered PokemonGo and was a little kid again trying to catch ‘em all. Needless to say he was too busy for conversation and managed to collect many Pokémon. We found a good spot and watched the dance.
It was quite surreal seeing giant Pikachus dancing on stage in pink tutus. I felt like I was at Disneyland. The whole atmosphere was fantastic and the music was very catchy. This was definitely the Pokémon version of Disneyland minus the rides. I did like feeling like a kid again. After this performance we tried to find some food but all of the queues were gigantic so we headed straight to what we both felt would be amazing: a Pikachu water fight!
After some arguing about directions (sorry Alex you were right…) and a bit of running to the wrong place (so I was right…) we managed to get to the next event on time. The Pikachu water fight was brilliant. Again the atmosphere, the crowd and music made it a really fun experience. Plus the rain had stopped. It was really great to see the wacky side of Japanese culture that I felt apart from one street in Tokyo we hadn’t really had a chance to see.
We managed to find some vegan sushi at a 7 11 and after one more Pikachu dance it was time for the grand finale of the Pikachu Outbreak Festival: the Pikachu Carnival!
This was amazing. Again it reminded me of being a kid at Disneyland watching the floats. There were so many dancing Pikachus. Pikachus on a bus went by, followed by a procession of dancing Pikachus and other non-Pikachu dancers. There was so much energy and fun in their dancing! I wondered if they were very warm in their costumes. I also liked people watching in the crowd and seeing everyone dressed in Pikachu themed clothing. I was pleased I didn’t feel left out with my own paper Pikachu headband.
The parade was a fantastic end to a fantastic trip in Japan. If you ever happen to come to Japan in the month of August try to make sure it collides with Pikachu Outbreak and experience true Pikachu madness!