#4023

How to enjoy Matsuri in Shitamachi

Ready for Matsuri?

May is the most comfortable month in Japan. Sun shines, flowers bloom and wind blows softly. However, in Shitamachi, May is the season of Matsuri, the summer festivals of Shrines.

Usually, the main events including Miya-Mikoshi is on Sunday. In the early morning Mikoshi is started from a shrine (called "Miyadashi"), goes around the neighbors and comes back to the shrine in the evening (called "Miyairi"). At Sanja Matsuri, Miyadashi and Miyairi are sometimes unsafe, because it is so crowded and people wearing Hanten are hot-blooded and go into a trance. I recommend to check their website in advance where you can meet Mikoshi. Besides Miya-Mikoshi, each Chokai (a small unit of town) has own Mikoshi. You can meet these Mikoshi on Saturday and Sunday.

Around a shrine, you will enjoy many Yatai (food stalls) and games. Try local foods like Takoyaki, Yakisoba, Yakitori, shave ice and Anzu-ame. Games like Yo-Yo-tsuri, Kingyo-tsuri, Wanage and Shateki are also fun.

In 2015, Matsuri are scheduled as follows:

May 9 &10, Shitaya Matsuri at Shitaya Shrine in Higashi Ueno
May 9 & 10, Kanda Matsuri at Kanda Myoujin in Soto Kanda
May 15 & 16, Sanja Mtsuri at Asakusa Shrine in Asakusa
May 23 & 24, Yushima Tenjin Matsuri at Yushima Tenmangu in Yushima
June 6 & 7, Torigoe Matsuri at Torigoe Shrine in Kuramae

In general, you can not carry Mikoshi, if you don't wear a Hanten specified in each Chokai. So, make friends with locals!

Check events in Shitamachi at:
https://www.facebook.com/oldtown.tokyo/events

Keiko, OTT image

Keiko, OTT

Japan

Keiko, OTT's other advice

Must Have Japanese Souvenirs: BUNBOGU images

Must Have Japanese Souvenirs: BUNBOGU

Let me introduce Japanese Stationary as the 2nd must have Japanese souvenirs*. In Japan, girls are energetic to have cute stationary and businessmen are interested in using cool gadgets and writing m…

September Events around Asakusa images

September Events around Asakusa

Donburi Grand Prix will be held during this event. Eat and vote your favorite Donburi. In Japan, we have various Donburi, such as Gyudon (Beef rice bowl), Kaisendon (Seafood rice bowl) or Tendon (Tem…

July Events in Asakusa and Ueno images

July Events in Asakusa and Ueno

Asagao means Morning Glory. Iriya Asagao Ichi is held at and around Iriya Kishimojin Temple. This event is held on 6, 7 and 8 July every year. This year, the street (Kototoi Dori) will be closed from…

Ume (plum) blossoms in Sumida-ku images

Ume (plum) blossoms in Sumida-ku

Can not wait Sakura? February is the time for Ume (plum) blossoms. In Sumida-ku, there are some places famous for Ume blossoms. Though Kameido Tenjin is also famous for wisteria, there are over 300 U…

Sakura in Asakusa images

Sakura in Asakusa

Denbouin Garden will be opened to public from mid-March through early May. This Japanese garden is usually closed. The best time will be late March or early April when Sakura blooms. (The photos in t…

5 recommendations to take your pictures wearing KIMONO in Asakusa images

5 recommendations to take your pictures wearing KIMONO in Asakusa

There are many good places to take pictures when you wear Kimono in Asakusa. Three gates to Sensoji, Kaminarimon, Hozomon and Nitenmon, are the best of course as well as Gojunotou (five-storied pagod…

You might also like

Why Visit Japan in Summer images

Why Visit Japan in Summer

Japan is a true "year-round" destination, but if you like the heat - and lively festivals - then summer is the perfect time for you to visit!Summer in Japan lasts from about June to mid-September…

Andres Zuleta, Boutique Japan image

Andres Zuleta, Boutique Japan

April 8 Flower Festival Celebrating Buddha's Birthday images

April 8 Flower Festival Celebrating Buddha's Birthday

April 8 is not a national holiday in Japan, but there are festivals at temples everywhere in the country. This day is the celebration of Buddha's birthday, often called Flower Festival (花まつり) or …

David image

David

Yatai Sweets: Baby Castella Mini Cakes images

Yatai Sweets: Baby Castella Mini Cakes

Castella is Japanese sponge cake. It is one of the foods popular as omiyage souvenirs and gifts. Baby Castella don't make fancy gifts, but they are fun. Fresh, hot, and baked in front of you, I think…

David image

David

2.5 Jigen Kamimatsuri: Anime/Subculture Event images

2.5 Jigen Kamimatsuri: Anime/Subculture Event

Video coverage by Subtokyo:http://youtu.be/LMFhlqb9JbwI've been to many Anime or Subculture related events during my past 5 years in Japan and even before that when I was back in America. While…

Alex Kobayashi /Subtokyo image

Alex Kobayashi /Subtokyo

Matsuri (Festivals) images

Matsuri (Festivals)

The best time to experience a festival in Japan is in from spring to fall. The best ones are in the summer, although many are technically in the spring or fall because their origins coincide with ha…

mikekato image

mikekato

Amazing Japanese Festivals in August images

Amazing Japanese Festivals in August

Many neighborhood associations take great effort to prepare for the yearly Matsuri (festival) in their area. This photo is taken in August as a group in the Noge area of Yokohama transports their O-m…

 image