shoryu-den cherry blossom

Osaka, Kyoto, Kobe, Nara, Shiga, Wakayama, Check out event schedules, hidden events, local and traditional festivals in the Kansai area.

Mar 18 – May 6 all-day Kodai-ji Temple
From mid-March to early May each year, Kodai-ji temple‘s stages are lit up with special illumination at night.  Its beautiful gardens and weeping cherry trees create magical atmosphre. Hours : 17:00 to 22:00 every nights during the period. Access : 15-minute walk from Keihan Gojo stationShare this:Click to share on Facebook (Opens in new window)Click…
Apr 21 – May 3 all-day Fushimi Inari Taisha
The Inari God makes a parade to give blessings once a year. Inari festival is the most important festival for Fushimi Inari Taisha Shrine. The festival  is held at Fushimi Inari Taisha Shrine from “Shinko festival” APR 21 to “Kanko festival” MAY 5. Shinko Festival Date : APR 21, from 11:00 Priests and accompanying members…
May 1 – May 5 all-day Fujinomori Shrine
Fujinomori Matsuri Festival, 「藤森祭」 is held at Fujinomori Shrine every year from MAY 1 to MAY 5. During the festival, there are many food stalls in the precincts, and portable shrines are carried around the shrine. There are also Japanese drum performances, and a samurai parade. The highlight of this festival is “kakeuma-shinji”, acrobatic horse-riding…
May 3 – May 5 all-day Heijo Palace
The World Heritage site Heijo Palace in the ancient capital of Nara is about to celebrate summer with a mix of tradition. Visitors can enjoy the parade of people in ancient costumes, music and food stalls at Heijo Palace. There are free shuttle buses from JR Yamato-Saidaiji Station and JR Nara Station on festival days.…
May 15 – Jun 30 all-day Ofusa Kannon Temple
In spring and autumn when the temple’s roses are in full bloom, Visitors can enjoy about 2,300 varieties of roses and smell their fragrances while strolling through the temple grounds. Date : Every Year May 15 to June 30 and October 19 to November 30 Open: 7:00 to 17:00 Admission : Free Location : Ofusa…
May 15 @ 10:00 – 16:00 Kamigamo jinja
Aoi Matsuri Festival is the most important annual rituals for both Shimogamo Jinja shrine and Kamigamo Jinja shrine. A festival with a 1400 years of continuous history stretching from the Heian period all the way to modern times. The highlight of the festival is the “Roto no Gi”, a tasteful Heian-period dynastic parade with some…
Jun 1 – Jul 9 all-day Mimuroto-ji Temple
Mimuroto-ji temple in Uji is a quiet place outside of Kyoto city – The main garden has 10,000 hydrangeas in various pink, purple, blue and white hues and a path that snakes right through them. Open : Usually the early June to the early July Hours : 8:30 to 16:30 Fee : 800 yen Access…
Jun 30 – Jul 2 all-day Aizen-do Temple
The Aizen Festival prepares for the hot summer ahead with a parade of women wearing cool and attractive yukata. The Aizen-Matsuri 「愛染祭り」is Osaka’s first summer festival of the year. This festival is believed to have originated when women wearing yukata(summer kimono) from the entertainment quarter visited the temple on a palanquin called kago. Every year…
Jul 1 – Jul 31 all-day Shijo-karasuma area
During the Heian period (794-1185), Kyoto suffered a series of natural disasters and plagues. As a form of appeasement to Mother Nature, a thousand years ago during a famine, purification ceremonies called “gouy-e” came into practice. Traditional spears were gathered from all over Japan as well as portable mikoshi (shrines) and offered to pay respect…
Jul 24 all-day Osaka Tenmangu Shrine
Tenmangu is a shinto shrine – founded in 949 – is popular with locals praying for academic success since it is devoted to the deity of learning: “Sugawara no Michizane”. The main celebration is held on the second day, July 25th and includes a land procession with “mikoshi” (portable shrines), a river procession with festival…
Jul 25 @ 19:30 – 21:00 Sakuranomiya Park
Enjoy the sight of 100 ships with bonfires under the fireworks. It’s the festival with the biggest number of spectators in the Kansai area. A number of fireworks : 5,000 The largest diameter of fireworks : 60-m (Size-2.5) Date : 25 JUL Hours : 19:30 to 21:00 Fee : Free Access : JR Sakuranomiya Station…
Jul 30 – Aug 1 all-day Sumiyoshi-Taisya Shrine
The Sumiyoshi Festival is held over three days. A highlight of this festival is the nagoshi-harai-shinji ritual on the middle day. The nagoshi-harai-shinji ritual involves women and children in the Muromachi period (14-16th century) costume going through a large straw ring. You can also join in this ritual to wish for good health. The Mikoshi…
Aug 16 @ 20:00 – 21:00 Kamogawa river bank
“Daimonji Gozan Okuribi” is the Buddhist festival of the feast of our ancestors. Known as “the Bon festival”, it is held on the evening(20:00 P.M) of August 16th. Gigantic Kanji characters and other motifs are lit on the five mountains surrounding the city of Kyoto. Now It is a famous as the Kyoto summer image. This…
Oct 1 – Oct 5 all-day Kitano Tenmangu Shrine
Zuiki Festival at Kitano-Tenmangu Shrine/ ずいき祭 This festival is held in appreciation for the year’s grain harvest. The festival began as an offering of new rice husks, vegetables and fruit to the deity. The name comes from the portable shrine, which is adorned with a taro stalk roof. OCT 1, 13:00 to 16:00 For the…
Oct 14 – Oct 15 all-day Matsubara Hachiman Shrine
Nada Fighting Festival/ 灘のけんか祭り Nada fighting festival is the popular festival held at the Matsubara Hachiman Shrine in Himeji City. It came to be called by this name “Fighting Festival”  because the mikoshi (portable shrines) are jolted against one another when carried on the shoulders of the men in the parade. The greatest attraction is…
Oct 22 @ 07:00 – 16:00 Kyoto Imperial Palace
  A parade from the Imperial palace to Heian-Jingu shrine. A grand ancient-costume procession where the long history of Japan unfolds before the spectators. This is a fine opportunity for taking a close look at the costumes, accessories and fittings which are reproduced with the quintessence of Kyoto’s traditional handicraft techniques. A festival held at…
Oct 22 @ 18:00 – Oct 23 @ 02:00 Kurama-dera Temple
The Kurama Fire Festival is counted as one of the three great unusual festivals of Kyoto. Held in Kurama, a small town in northern Kyoto. The Kurama Fire Festival is filled with lit torches and iron baskets holding fire.   You may experience incredible spectacle of the danger of so much fire so close at hand. …
Nov 8 all-day Fushimi-Inari Shrine
Tens of thousands of the ritual tossing prayer sticks gathered from around Japan are burned in bonfires in appreciation of the abundant harvest, to purify one’s transgressions and reduce obstacles, and to pray for one health and happiness. When the prayer sticks on to the fire, the smoke clears and fires begin to rise up from…
Jan 9 – Jan 11 all-day Nishinomiya Shrine
Nishinomiya-jinja Shrine is the home of the god of commerce. The Toka Ebisu Festival, which takes place on the 9th, 10th, 11th of January each year, is always a lively event with many visitors and merchants to get sacred bamboo branches decorated with lucky items in hopes for the success of their businesses. Access :…
Jan 9 – Jan 11 all-day Imamiya-ebisu Shrine
Imamiya Ebisu-jinja Shrine is known for “Ebessan” , the god of commerce.  The To-ka Ebisu Festival held on the 9th, 10th and 11th of January each year. It gathers more than a million “merchants” from business owners to company employees wishing for prosperous business. Visitors can just enjoy food stalls around the shrine. Access :…