Nearly 83,000 people visited the Imperial Palace in central Tokyo on Sunday to celebrate Emperor Akihito’s 85th birthday.
This was the Emperor’s final birthday greeting to the public before his abdication next April.
The Imperial Household Agency says the number of well-wishers was the largest since 1969.
The agency also says nearly 10,000 people were unable to enter the palace compound before the third greeting. Officials asked them to write their congratulatory messages in special books in the afternoon.