The Tokyo Organising Committee of the Olympic and Paralympic Games (Tokyo 2020) today announced the starting point and schedule for the Tokyo 2020 Olympic Torch Relay (Tokyo 2020 OTR), based on a consensus attained at the Multi-Party Leaders' Meeting. The Tokyo 2020 OTR will travel to all 47 prefectures in Japan, showcasing the varied cultural and scenic attractions of each region.
The Tokyo 2020 OTR will commence on 26 March 2020 in Fukushima Prefecture, and start its journey southwards. The torch is likely to traverse the inland prefectures of central Japan against the backdrop of Japan's famous cherry blossoms, which typically bloom there in early April.
The Tokyo 2020 OTR will then proceed southwest until it reaches the islands of Okinawa, the southernmost prefecture of Japan, in early May. It will make its way back up to the north of the country, passing through Kyoto in late May, all the way up to Hokkaido, where it will arrive in mid-June. The Tokyo 2020 OTR will then turn southwards again and complete its long journey in Tokyo after spending three days in each of the four prefectures outside of the capital that are hosting events during the Olympic Games Tokyo 2020.
The torch will traverse Japan for a total of 121 days. In addition to building excitement across the country ahead of the Tokyo 2020 Games and promoting the Olympic values, the Torch Relay is aimed at showcasing solidarity with the regions still recovering from the 2011 earthquake and tsunami under its slogan “Hope Lights Our Way.”
The precise route of the Tokyo 2020 OTR will be firmed up during the coming months and announced in 2019, following approval by the IOC. The date and the place of the Olympic Flame's arrival from Greece will also be announced on a later date.