Jul 13, 2018

Summers in Japan with no daylight savings

One of the memories I have from first moving to Japan 5 years ago was getting in to Narita fairly late in the evening, and trying to hit the hay almost as soon as we arrived at our accommodation to beat jet lag. I woke up the next morning thinking it was around 11am, since the sun was already up and beaming through the small gap between the curtains. 

Rolled over, looked at the time on my phone...and it was 4.45am or thereabouts.

Summers in Japan with no daylight savings photo

The Land of the Rising (way too early) Sun...

I've always been a light sleeper, and that's exacerbated by noise or light - if I hear birds chirping, people outside starting their cars, or see any amount of sunlight peeking into my room, I'm basically awake. My kids seem to have inherited this trait from me (much to my husband's disdain) and as you may have guessed, summers here are a delight (note sarcasm) when it comes to our little ones being up early. 

Back home I'm used to having daylight savings, where in the lead up to summer your clocks move forward an hour. As well as not being woken up by the sun at 4am, the added benefit is there that you've got more daylight hours to enjoy when you knock off from work. 

Japan's culture of not having much open (bar the convenience stores) prior to 10am also plays into my frustration with the lack of daylight savings as well. I'm sure if I could get out and do my grocery shopping at a supermarket that was open at 6am then I wouldn't find the whole " 4am crack of dawn" thing such a hindrance. In some of the bigger cities you might be lucky enough to have 24/7 supermarkets, but here in the sticks nothing opens until 10, 10.30, sometimes even 11am. 

Is daylight savings something you're used to back home? How do you find the early morning sunshine and lack of daylight savings here in Japan?



After spending the last several years in the beating heart of Tokyo, I will be spending the next three in the countryside of Japan. I adore this country and all it has to offer - and I'm always learning more and more about life here as I go along!

1 Comment

  • Lyssays

    on Jul 13

    Urgh, I really miss daylight savings! My son also wakes up with the sun and it's very annoying at this time of year!