Sat, Mar

Tagata Shrine Hōnensai “Penis Festival”

10:00am – 4:00pm

Just like the Kanamara Festival that takes place near Tokyo, this annual celebration in Komaki City also promotes a certain phallic object.

It is a Harvest Festival, or Hōnensai in Japanese.

Interested in more “penis festivals”? Check out our full list of fertility festivals around Japan.

What happens?

Every year around 10 days before the festival, a statue is carved from a Japanese cypress tree into the shape of a phallus. It isn’t small at around 2 meters in length, 60 centimeters in girth, and weighing in at 280 kg (400 kg with the portable shrine attached). It is then carried on a mikoshi (portable shrine) by men aged 42, an unlucky age in Japan, on a procession towards Tagata Shrine.


Held on March 15 every year, the festival commences at 10 a.m. when stalls selling phallus-shaped products — and regular-shaped food — open. The large wooden phallus will also be unveiled at one of the nearby shrines. Here you can stand next to it and take pictures before it makes its parade debut.

  • Consider grabbing a snack
  • The wooden phallus is unveiled at Shinmei-sha Shrine before the festival starts.

At around 2 p.m., the procession starts from a local shrine (Shinmei-sha Shrine or Kumano Shrine — this alternates every year). The parade is headed by five women holding smaller wooden phalluses and they’ll encourage you to touch them during the parade. These women’s names are drawn during a ritual that took place the previous day.

  • Five women lead the parade carrying smaller wooden phalluses.
  • The phallus is carried by men aged 42.

As the men carry the portable shrine carrying the statue, they will occasionally stop and jostle it. This is why the procession takes around an hour to reach Tagata Shrine. Just before they enter through the torii gate, they will spin the phallus several times (at around 3 p.m.).

  • People get excited as the phallus heads for Tagata Shrine.
  • Volunteers hand out free sake for the onlookers.

At the end of the day (around 4 p.m.), rice cakes will be thrown in celebration.

History of Tagata Shrine Hōnensai: Why the phallus?

Tagata Shrine is more than 1,500 years old and has always been known for fertility and harvest. Even in the Jomon and Yayoi periods, people would make phalluses out of wood as a symbol of power and life.

The Shinto festival is held each year to pray for a rich harvest, growth, fertility, and the prosperity of offspring.


If you want to know more history about the festival and would like to be directed to the right place, then don’t hesitate to ask the Tagata Jinja English Volunteer Guide Group. They will be at the front of the main shrine from 10 a.m. There will also be English guidance at the nearby information stand.

How to get there

To get there from Nagoya Station, take the Meitetsu Inuyama Line and change trains at Inuyama Station for the Meitetsu Komaki Line. Get off at Meitetsu Tagata Jinja-mae Station and walk for 5 minutes. The whole journey should take around 50 minutes.

Note that if you catch the first-class train from Nagoya Station to Inuyama, you’ll have to pay a small surcharge for your seat. You can book in advance here.

If you’ve had enough of the world celebrating male members, then the Oagata Shrine nearby focuses on women’s fertility.

Organizers may cancel events, alter schedules, or change admission requirements without notice. Always check official sites before heading to an event.

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