This festival is is held in the city of Kishiwada, Osaka prefecture and is renowned as one of Osaka’s rowdiest. Danjiri are large, heavy wheeled carts that resemble small temples. The weighty carts are wheeled around wildly by the festival participants. In the past there have been plenty of accidents and even deaths – no doubt assisted by heavy alcohol consumption.
The Kishiwada festival features 34 danjiri and is centered around Kishiwada Castle. At night they are strewn with lanterns which make an impressive sight. On the first day, a parade takes place in front of Kishiwada Station. On day two, festivities start at 9am with ceremonies at shrines surrounding Kishiwada Castle. After this, the danjiri are paraded around the neighbourhoods near the castle, providing one of the festival highlights.
Head to Kishiwada Station on the Nankai Line—it’s 25 minutes from Shinimamiya Station which can be reached on the Osaka Loop Line. From Osaka Station the journey takes around 45 minutes and costs ¥670. Alternatively you can catch a direct Nankai train from the Namba Nankai Station for ¥490 taking 25 minutes.
If you’re keen to stay right in the heart of Kishiwada, then the Station Hotel Miyako is a Western-style spot with everything you need. If you would rather stay in Osaka, being in the Namba area is best transport wise. Fuku Yado Hostel has resonable rates and a smart design which combines traditional features (like a sunken hearth) with modern amenities. If you like capsule hotels, then Y’s Cabin is a simple but smart option with traditional baths and comfy beds. For hotel lovers we suggest the Dormy Inn Shinsaibashi which comes with a hot spring to unwind in after a day of wild sights.