In the feudal times of Edo-era Japan, Kaga — the name for present-day Kanazawa — was the largest domain in the land. So large was it that it could produce a million bushels of rice, or hyakumongoku. This festival celebrates the rich culture and tradition that developed in Kanazawa during this golden age.
It’s the biggest annual traditional festival in Kanazawa, held over three days in June. All events are free unless otherwise noted.
As this is a major festival, expect accommodations to book out early.
Kanazawa Hyakumangoku Festival 2023 schedule
Day 1 (Friday)
- 09:00–10:00 Water Drawing Ceremony at Kanazawa Shrine
Shrine priests draw water from the Kinjo Reitaku Sacred Well; this is followed by a procession to Seisonkaku Villa, where a gratitude/retirement ceremony is performed for old tea whisks.
- 10:00–10:40:Shinto prayers at Oyama Shrine.
- 13:00–14:00: Shinto tea offering to the gods at Oyama Shrine
- 18:40–21:00: Children’s Lantern & Taiko Procession (various locations around town)
Day 2 (Saturday)
- 8:30–16:00: Hyakumangoku Chakai at Kenrokuen (and other locations)
A grand tea ceremony, held at different venues in and around Kenrokuen, each sponsored by a different tea school. Reserve a seat in advance (two seats for ¥2,000). A limited number of tickets (¥1,500 per person) will also be available on the day on a first-come-first-serve basis.
- 10:00–18:00: Bon Shogatsu at Kanazawa Castle Park. A “Summer New Year” celebration with lion dances, folk dances, taiko drumming, and more.
- 14:00–17:50: Hyakumangoku Parade. Highlights of the parade include a reenactment of feudal era procession (complete with period attire), lion dances, daring acrobatic displays by local firefighters, and taiko drumming. The parade begins at the east exit of Kanazawa Station and finishes at Kanazawa Castle Park.
- 18:00–20:00: Hyakumangoku Traditional Dance Parade. Thousands of locals, organized into teams and wearing colorful yukata, perform traditional folk dances along Route 157 (between Minami-cho and Katamachi)
- 19:00–21:00: Takigi Noh (Kanazawa Castle Park). A performance of traditional noh theatre illuminated by torchlight. Entry is free. A Children’s performance takes place from 6.30pm. In the event of rain, the performance will instead be held at the Ishikawa Prefecture Noh Theater.
Day 3 (Sunday)
- 8:30–16:00: Another Hyakumangoku Chakai at Kenrokuen
- 10:00–16:00: Another Bon Shogatsu at Kanazawa Castle Park
- 10:30–15:00: Folk Song Performances at Theater Kagekiza. Performances of traditional Kanazawa and Ishikawa Prefecture folk songs. There are two shows: one at 10am and one at 2pm.
Please note these times are as listed but are subject to change.