imperial palace

Japanese  well-wishers shout "banzai" (cheers) for Japan's Emperor Akihito during the royal family's public appearance for New Year celebrations at the Imperial Palace in Tokyo...Japanese well-wishers shout "banzai" (cheers) for Japan's Emperor Akihito during the royal family's public appearance for New Year celebrations at the Imperial Palace in Tokyo January 2, 2014.

Yuya Shino/Reuters

Japanese well-wishers shout “banzai” to Japan’s Emperor Akihito during the royal family’s public appearance for new year celebrations at the Imperial Palace in Tokyo on Thursday.

Emperor Akihito greets public on his 80th birthday...epa03999823 Well-wishers wave Japanese national flags while celebrating Emperor Akihito's 80th birthday during his public appearance at the Imperial Palace in Tokyo, Japan, 23 December 2013. Emperor Akihito, who reached his 80th birthday, still handles various events despite having heart surgery in 2012.

Franck Robichon/EPA

Well-wishers wave Japanese flags while celebrating Emperor Akihito’s 80th birthday during his public appearance at the Imperial Palace in Tokyo. Emperor Akihito still handles various events despite having heart surgery in 2012.

People dressed in authentic costumes representing various periods and characters in Japanese feudal history participate in the annual Jidai Festival at Kyoto Imperial Palace on Tuesday in Kyoto, Japan.  Each year approximately 2000 people participate in the Jidai Matsuri festival on October 22, the anniversary of the foundation of Kyoto. Participants dress in authentic costumes from almost every period of Japanese history and parade from the Imperial Palace to Heian Shrine.

Buddhika Weerasinghe/Getty Images

People dressed in costumes representing various periods and characters in Japanese feudal history participate in the annual Jidai Festival at Kyoto Imperial Palace on Tuesday. The festival marks the anniversary of the foundation of the city.

Japanese women dressed in traditional costumes walk in the procession of the Aoi Festival at the Imperial Palace on May 15, 2013 in Kyoto, Japan. Aoi Festival is one of the three main festivals of ancient capital of Kyoto that festival is dating back 1,400 years. About 500 participants dressed as nobles of the Heian Period (794-1185) costumes, walk with decorated ox carts and horse around eight kilometers from Kyoto Imperial Palace to Shimogamo and Kamigamo shrines.

Buddhika Weerasinghe/Getty Images

Japanese women dressed in traditional costumes walk in the procession of the Aoi Festival at the Imperial Palace in Kyoto, Japan. Aoi Festival is one of the three main festivals of ancient capital of Kyoto and dates back 1,400 years. About 500 participants dressed as nobles of the Heian Period (794-1185), walk with decorated ox carts and horses for about 8km from Kyoto Imperial Palace to Shimogamo and Kamigamo shrines.