Mid
Oct

Otsu Hikiyama Festival

Free

One of Shiga’s largest three festivals, the Otsu Hikiyama festival is a stunning display of elaborate Mikoshi and parades through the city streets.  The festival celebrates Otsu as a successful modern industrial city and showcases the prosperity of the townspeople.  It has been named a Shiga Prefectural Intangible Cultural Property as it has a history of over 400 years and is attended by people from all over the prefecture. One of the unique elements is the use of tanuki masks by participants, a tradition which dates back to the very beginnings of the festival. There are thirteen floats to be paraded by local residents, along with music and chanting and the festival is led by the Saigyo-Sakura-Tanuki from Kajiya-cho district.

The night before is a lively affair of music and dance with a buzzing atmosphere in preparation for the day ahead and is just as enjoyable, if not more so, than the parade itself. Saturday’s schedule starts at around 6pm and Sunday’s activities start at 9.30am until 5pm.

Get the best Japan Cheapo hacks direct to your inbox

Related Events
  • Geisha Kyoto Festival
    Mid
    May

    Kankame-Inari Festival

    Located at a shrine which alas, does not exist on google maps, this is a very small local festival but has plenty of Geiko and Maiko (Kyoto’s geisha). Taking place in early-to-mid May, the festival begins on the evening of […]

    Free
  • Aoi Festival Kyoto
    Sat, May
    15

    Aoi Matsuri

    Cancelled

    Also known as the Hollyhock Festival, this is one of the city’s biggest events and is a great chance to see traditional costumes on parade from the Imperial Palace to the Kamo shrines. Over 500 people participate, all wearing hollyhock […]

    10:30am – 3:30pm
    Free
  • Mifune Festival Kyoto
    Sun, May
    16

    Mifune Festival

    The Mifune Festival takes place on the Katsura River in Arashiyama on the third Sunday of May each year. The festival features traditional boats carrying musicians and performers floating down the river. The name of the festival translates as the […]

    12:30pm – 3:00pm
    Free
  • Mid
    May

    Kobe Festival

    Cancelled

    The Kobe Festival is a citywide festival that runs over two days. The first day sees separate celebrations in each of the city’s 9 wards. The big parade happens on Sunday along Sannomiya Flower Road starting at 12 noon. For […]

    Free