Queen Margrethe II and Prince Henrik of Denmark started their State Visit to Japan on this day in 2004, where they were hosted by Emperor Akihito and Empress Michiko of Japan. The Danish royal couple were in Japan to help kick off celebrations marking the following year’s bicentennial of the birth of Hans Christian Andersen, the Danish fairy tale writer. Crown Prince Frederik and Crown Princess Mary visited Japan in 2017, to mark the 150th anniversary of diplomatic relations between Denmark and Japan.
At the start of the State Visit, Queen Margrethe and Prince Henrik were officially welcomed by Emperor Akihito and Empress Michiko in a ceremony at the Akasaka State Guesthouse, which was followed by an Audience with the Imperial Couple at the Imperial Palace of Tokyo.
In the evening, Emperor Akihito (wearing the Order of the Elephant) and Empress Michiko (in the Imperial Chrysanthemum Tiara and the Order of the Elephant) hosted a State Banquet in honour of Queen Margrethe (wearing the Pearl Poiré Tiara and the Order of the Chrysanthemum) and Prince Henrik (in the Order of the Chrysanthemum) at the Imperial Palace of Tokyo.
The following evening, Queen Margrethe and Prince Henrik hosted a Return Concert and Reception for Emperor Akihito, Empress Michiko, and other members of the Japanese Imperial Family at the Akasaka State Guesthouse.
Other events included a display of Traditional Dance at Gunma Prefecture Goverment Office, a Press Conference at the Akasaka Palace, and a visit to the Honda headquarters in Tokyo.