Summer snapshot: Japan celebrates the sea for Umi no Hi

Celebrations for Umi no Hi, or Marine Day, in Tokyo Bay, from the artificial island of Odaiba

Each day this summer, Relaxnews is picking an unusual, amusing or impressive picture from around the world. Today's photo, Monday, July 17, takes us to Japan for the Marine Day national holiday.

Umi no Hi is a Japanese national holiday known as "Marine Day," "Ocean Day" or "Sea Day." To thank the ocean for its bounty and celebrate the importance of the sea for this island nation, Japan pays homage to the ocean on the third Monday in July with festivities including the lighting of paper lanterns. 

The celebration originates from the 1940s but only became a national public holiday in 1995. As a relatively new holiday, there are no specific traditional ceremonies held in honor of Umi no Hi.

This three-day weekend is an opportunity for Japanese people of all ages to head to the coast for a breath of fresh air or take part in activities organized by the sea or in aquariums throughout the country.