SUN

Iwate: Hatsuka-ya-sai

Night Festival featuring a parade of worshippers holding torchlights in their hands and Ennen-no-mai (an ancient dance with music for longevity), designated as one of the National Important Intangible Folk Cultural Properties. Schedule & Key events: from 7:20 p.m.: Parade from Hiraizumi Sta. to ...

SUN

Akita: Hadaka-mairi

Shrine homage paid by half-naked youths. After being purified by cold water, about 300 local young men who carry the offerings on their shoulders, dash up the 2-km approach with 103 steps to the shrine on Mt. Higashiyama. Schedule & Key events: 9 a.m.-11 a.m. Location: Shinzan-jinja ...

SUN

Fukui: Tsuruga Nishimachi-no-Tsunahiki

Harvest Festival. Tug of war is held in prayer for a rich harvest and a big catch of fish. A tug is 25 centimeters in diameter and 50 meters long. Schedule & Key events: 12:30 p.m.-3 p.m. Location: Nishimachi-dori Street, Aioi-cho, Tsuruga, Fukui Access: JR Hokuriku Honsen Line ...

SUN

Kumamoto: Hamayumi-sai (Matobakai)

Hamayumi-sai - shooting three arrows to commence the ceremony. Matobakai - loin-clothed youths scrambling for a round straw mat, 60 cm in diameter and 6 kg in weight. The fight for obtaining the mat is continued on Kaigan-dori street and finally in the water of Ariake ...

MON

Kyoto: Hatsu Kobo

First fair of the year. Many stalls selling used kimono, potted plants, secondhand books and the like are set up. Schedule & Key events: from dawn to dark Location: To-ji Temple, Minami-ku, Kyoto, Kyoto Access: (1) From JR Kyoto Sta., walk 15 min. (2) Kintetsu Kyoto Line to Toji ...

MON

Tokyo: Hatsu Daishi

First fair of the year. A lot of open-air stalls sell Daruma, sweets, clothes and the like in the compound of the temple and its neighborhood. Schedule & Key events: 6 a.m.- Location: Nishiarai Daishi Temple and others, Adachi-ku, Tokyo Access: Tobu Daishi Line to Daishi-mae Sta., and then ...

MON

Kanagawa: Hatsu Daishi

First fair of the year. Open-air stalls selling Daruma are set up. Schedule & Key events: 9 a.m.- Location: Kawasaki Daishi Temple, Kawasaki, Kanagawa Access: Keikyu Daishi Line to Kawasaki Daishi Sta., and then walk 8 min. Festival information compiled in cooperation with the Tourist Information Center of ...

FRI

Kyoto: Hatsu Tenjin

First fair of the year featuring street stalls selling used kimono, potted plants, food and other items. The fair is as large in scale as the one at To-ji Temple on Jan. 21. Schedule & Key events: from dawn to dark Location: Kitano Tenman-gu Shrine, Kamigyo-ku, Kyoto, ...

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Tokyo: Usokae-Shinji

Bullfinch exchange ritual. Bullfinches , which are called "Uso" in Japanese, are regarded as symbols of good luck. People exchange old carved wooden bullfinches for new ones. Kasai-Bayashi (Japanese festival music) and Sato-Kagura (Shinto dance with music) will be performed several times a day ...

SAT

Iwate: Hadaka-mairi

Hadaka-mairi, shrine homage paid by partly attired youths. Schedule & Key events: ● Jan. 14 from 5:30 p.m.: Hadaka-mairi at Kyojo-ji Temple ● Jan. 15 from 4:30 p.m.: Hadaka-mairi at Morioka Hachiman-gu Shrine ● Jan. 26 from 4:30 p.m.: Hadaka-mairi at Sakurayama-jinja ...

SAT

Nara: Wakakusayama-yaki

Grass-burning Festival. This is the traditional festival to herald the arrival of spring in this region. If it rains, it will be postponed to Jan. 27. Schedule & Key events: from 6:15 p.m.: Fireworks display ...

SUN

Osaka: Dai-Sagicho-hoe (Tondo)

Big Bonfire. New Year's decorations are burnt in holy fire in prayer for prosperity and good health. Schedule & Key events: from 5 p.m.: Bonfire Location: Ebara-ji Temple, Sakai, Osaka Access: JR Hanwa Line to Tsukuno Sta., and then walk 15 min. Festival information ...

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Tokyo: O-Zumo Hatsu Basho

First Grand Sumo Tournament of the year at Ryogoku Kokugikan Hall. Dohyo-iri (the ring-entering ceremonies) by Yokozuna (the grand champions) take place around 3:55 p.m. daily. Then the main matches by Maku-uchi (upper-rank Sumo wrestlers) start. Advance tickets are sold at Ticket Pia, convenience ...

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Tokyo: Daikoku Matsuri

Festival featuring a purification ceremony (people coming of age pour icy water over themselves) and Hocho-shiki (rite or traditional art of skillfully slicing a large carp using a Japanese knife and chopsticks, not even touching the fish with hands). Schedule & Key events: ● Jan. 26 ...

MON

Tokyo: Daruma Ichi

First fair of Daruma. Around 150 open-air stalls selling Daruma are set up. The festival features Chigo-Gyoretsu (a parade of children in fancy attire). Schedule & Key events: sunrise-sunset  Open-air stalls are set up from 1:30 p.m.: Chigo-Gyoretsu is held in the compound of the ...

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Hokkaido: Chitose-Shikotsuko Hyoto Matsuri

Ice Festival. Many ice sculptures exhibited on the shore are lit up. Some more events are scheduled during the festival period. Schedule & Key events: ● daily 4:30 p.m.-10 p.m. Ice sculptures lighting up ● Saturdays, Sundays and national holidays from 6:30 p.m.: Fireworks display Location: Lake Shikotsu, ...

Notice: Event and location information is subject to change.