Summer Festivals to Celebrate around Japan
Festivals are an essential element of summer in Japan. Held around the country, some feature music and dancing, others spectacular lights or massive floats. On this special episode of Journeys in Japan, Shizuka Anderson introduces 4 of the largest, most exuberant summer festivals that have been featured in previous shows. Each has its own history and local traditions that often date back centuries. What they all share in common is the passion and intensity of their local communities.

Awa Odori (Tokushima Prefecture)

This is one of the largest festivals in Japan and traces its history back more than 400 years. It is held over 4 days in mid-August every year. The 2021 festival will be held on a smaller scale than usual.

Akita Kanto Festival & Aomori Nebuta Festival

These 2 festivals feature massive lanterns that color the night sky, and are held in early August. In 2021, both of these festivals have been canceled.

Kishiwada Danjiri Festival (Osaka Prefecture)

Giant floats are pulled through the city streets, negotiating corners at breakneck speed. This intense festival is held over 2 days each year in mid-September. The 2021 festival will go ahead, but on a reduced scale.

Access