Children, teens, and adults can be seen crowding the Hata Sensuda Sports Park. Tents with the aroma of delicious festival foods wafting from them can also be seen from a distance as people order treats from them, forming long lines that snake towards the parking lot. Everyone here is excitedly awaiting the event of the night – the Hata Fireworks Festival.
One of the unique festivals of the area is the Demon Fireworks Festival, known as the Oni-Hanabi in Japanese. Every summer from early June to the end of July, Noboribetsu holds a special festival to celebrate the demons living in the area.
Japanese summers may bring on the heat and humidity, but they also signal Japan’s love of the festive. Tokyo’s festivals cover the whole spectrum – from congenial goodwill ceremonies to fireworks extravaganzas, summertime in Tokyo is never a dull moment.
In keeping with the ancient custom, Yasukuni Shrine holds the yearly Mitama Festival around July 13-16 as part of the Obon festivities. Mitama refers to the spirit or soul of the dead. During this season, Japanese hang lanterns and place offerings at the altars as prayers for their ancestors’ spirits to be freed of their sufferings. Since 1947, the Mitama Festival has lightened up the Yasukuni Shrine grounds with more than 30,000 glittering lanterns or chochin.
It's summer in Japan. And that means fireworks! So slip into your kimono or “jinbei”, grab an uchiwa fan and check out these five fireworks festivals in the Kanto region...
The Gion Matsuri, and the events in and around it, runs for an entire month: beginning on July 1st and running until July 31st.
Kanamara Matsuri is one of Japan’s quirkier festivals. Translated to English, it means: “festival of the steel phallus”.
Azabu Juban hosts a different kind of summer festival. A few years ago this ritzy neighborhood near Roppongi limited entry to local merchants only, and since the area is a foodie’s paradise, the one thing you won’t find here is ordinary festival fare.