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Top Japanese Festivals, which ones

TuskCracker

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TOP JAPANESE FESTIVALS, WHAT ARE THEY
I asked this in another forum and received this


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1. Yuki Matsuri (Snow Festival) – Sapporo
2. O-Mizutori – Todaiji, Nara
3. Sanja Matsuri – Sensoji Asakusa, Tokyo
4. Grand Festival – Toshogu Shrine – Nikko
5. Gion Matsuri – Yasaka Shrine, Kyoto
6. Nebuta Matsuri – Aomori
7. Daimonji Festival – Kyoto
8. Yabusame Festival – Kamakura
9. Kishiwada Daijiri Festival - Osaka
10. Jidai Matsuri – Heian Shrine, Kyoto

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The Sapporo Snow Festival definitely makes my list, as would the Naked
Man Festival (裸祭り). Where's the best place for that btw? Anyone?

I hear that either Tanabata or Obon is pretty nice in my area

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Yuki Matsuri (Snow Festival) – Sapporo (Feb 1 – 5)
2. O-Mizutori – Todaiji, Nara (Mar 12)
3. Sanja Matsuri – Sensoji Asakusa, Tokyo (May 16 – 17)
4. Grand Festival – Toshogu Shrine – Nikko (May 17 – 18)
5. Gion Matsuri – Yasaka Shrine, Kyoto (Jul 16 – 17)
6. Nebuta Matsuri – Aomori (Aug 2 – 7)
7. Daimonji Festival – Kyoto (Aug 16)
8. Yabusame Festival – Kamakura (Sep 16)
9. Kishiwada Daijiri Festival - Osaka (Sep 14 – 15)
10. Jidai Matsuri – Heian Shrine, Kyoto (Oct 22)

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I would enjoy seeing
- > additions to this list
- > improve the list if felt wrong
- > 1-2 sentences on each festival
-> what city/town, and region of Japan


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Mars Man

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In Nagano, there are a number of festivals/events which are simi-nationally known or at least knowable.

One, and perhaps the biggest, is the Suwa fireworks festival on August 16th of every year. It is held on the lake side in Suwa.

Another two--and which is larger I don't know--are the street dances. Matsumoto Bon Bon, I would tend to think, has more going for it than the street dance in Nagano city, due to the castle area's being so fitting for such an event. Three hours of street dancing--and the girls always look so nice !!

And of course, one very, very unknown of as yet festival here, is the Last Beer of the Summer festival. It's held on the first (and sometimes second) Saturday of September each year. Very few people attend it--I mean it's so unknown--but it is always super great !! I attend each and every year. . . since it's held at my house ! :giggle: 😄 :)
 

Somasorsa

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I saw this interesting festival on TV called Honen Matsuri, a fertility festival at the Tagata Shrine in Komaki. Here's one web page explaining the rituals and stuff: NameBright - Coming Soon
Too bad I didnt have a chance to attend it douring my stay in Japan :giggle:
 

Iron Chef

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I'm surprised no one's mentioned the Hakata Dontaku Festival in Fukuoka. Every year in the beginning of May, this two day festival draws in a couple million visitors (probably due to the fact that it coincides with Golden Week). Tenjin is usually crowded on any given weekend but during Dontaku i've learned to stay away completely, heh. Imagine your worst experience in the most crowded subway or train you've ever been on and then multiply that times five city blocks. You get the picture. :cool:
Japan Atlas: Festivals
 

Mars Man

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Some good sites found and presented there folks !! Nice !!

I always like to take in the smaller ones rather than the big ones, because they do really lose meaning in a lot of ways, as Iron Chef rightly proposed, because of the masses of people blocking any 'spiritual' connection with the heart of the event.

For example (using the list provided in the site presented by Iron Chef san) I once went to the Onabshira festival in Suwa. There were so many people there that to get anywhere near close enough to easily see the tree slide down the hill--obviously about the main point of the several day event--you had to go early, stand in a spot completely compressed by bodies all around you (and at least one of them I didn't mind so much, to be honest) and put up with having very little control over your ability to stand.

As the log finally came over the crest--it took long enough--and the drunk old gentlemen were falling off of it in random directions, the crowd swayed in the direction of the fall; to the extent that I actually, for a second or two, felt a fear of being crushed by the pressure. I had no absolutely no control nor ability nor power to stand on my own. It was amazing that the effect of the crowded, rubber-necking to see the log go down, created so much energy and force.

Yeah, the smaller ones are better--and actually there are a number of Onbashira-like festivals around Nagano. At least two that I've heard of. MM
 

Ewok85

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Yup, smaller ones are always so much better. When I lived in Ichihara in faaaar out Chiba (go go Jef unitied!) they would have the local matsuri, and at new years the shrine around the corner would be doing something. Just last weekend I got invited to go to (not quite a festival but fun) an event in Omotesando which consisted mainly of drinking, eating, and carrying mikoshi around the busy streets :p Had a chance to do similar stuff at Sanja-matsuri in Ginza and it comes down to knowing the right people.
 

TuskCracker

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Merge with;All Japanese Festivals,which ones

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Someone said I should merge this with "All Japanese Festivals,which ones", in the "Culture Shock" section. I could n-o-t find it. So I put it in here anyways.


:1. Yuki Matsuri (Snow Festival) – Sapporo
2. O-Mizutori – Todaiji, Nara
3. Sanja Matsuri – Sensoji Asakusa, Tokyo
4. Grand Festival – Toshogu Shrine – Nikko
5. Gion Matsuri – Yasaka Shrine, Kyoto
6. Nebuta Matsuri – Aomori
7. Daimonji Festival – Kyoto
8. Yabusame Festival – Kamakura
9. Kishiwada Daijiri Festival - Osaka
10. Jidai Matsuri – Heian Shrine, Kyoto

:1. Yuki Matsuri (Snow Festival) – Sapporo (Feb 1 – 5)
2. O-Mizutori – Todaiji, Nara (Mar 12)
3. Sanja Matsuri – Sensoji Asakusa, Tokyo (May 16 – 17)
4. Grand Festival – Toshogu Shrine – Nikko (May 17 – 18)
5. Gion Matsuri – Yasaka Shrine, Kyoto (Jul 16 – 17)
6. Nebuta Matsuri – Aomori (Aug 2 – 7)
7. Daimonji Festival – Kyoto (Aug 16)
8. Yabusame Festival – Kamakura (Sep 16)
9. Kishiwada Daijiri Festival - Osaka (Sep 14 – 15)
10. Jidai Matsuri – Heian Shrine, Kyoto (Oct 22)




:1. Yuki Matsuri (Snow Festival) – Sapporo (Feb 1 – 5)
Really boring ----> 2. O-Mizutori – Todaiji, Nara (Mar 12)
3. Sanja Matsuri – Sensoji Asakusa, Tokyo (May 16 – 17)
4. Grand Festival – Toshogu Shrine – Nikko (May 17 – 18)
Really crowded ----> 5. Gion Matsuri – Yasaka Shrine, Kyoto (Jul 16 – 17)
6. Nebuta Matsuri – Aomori (Aug 2 – 7)
Really cool if you watch from a good spot ---> 7. Daimonji Festival – Kyoto (Aug 16)
8. Yabusame Festival – Kamakura (Sep 16)
9. Kishiwada Daijiri Festival - Osaka (Sep 14 – 15)
the WORST one EVER -----> 10. Jidai Matsuri – Heian Shrine, Kyoto (Oct 22)


I would like to see 2-3 sentences on each. What makes them special, or why they are averages etc. etc. etc.

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