Tokyo events for Monday, September 11 to Sunday, September 17, 2023.

Wow. This will be a long, eventful weekend — and not just because Monday is Respect for the Aged Day.

The traditional mikoshi (portable shrine) festivals are endless and in locations all over Tokyo (the most central being in Shibuya). If that doesn’t tickle your fancy, then there is also samba dancing in Asakusa, an EDM party and Mexican festival in Odaiba, and autumn flowers on the brink of blooming. Check out the full list on our events page.

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Akasaka Hikawa Festival

The Akasaka Hikawa Matsuri is an easily accessible community festival with lots of activities and events. The festival features restored dashi, which are traditional wheeled floats.

Setagaya Hachimangū Fall Festival

The unique feature of the Setagaya Hachimangū Shrine Fall Festival is the ritual sumo that takes place on a dohyo in front of the shrine. The ritual sumo — known as hōnōsumo — is usually open to the public and takes place on Saturday.

The Pirates of Tokyo Bay Bilingual Improv Show

For over a decade, the Pirates of Tokyo Bay have been making audiences laugh with short-form improv comedy shows in English and Japanese. The Pirates of Tokyo Bay do their best to make each show half in English and half in Japanese. Join them as their performers create scenes, stories, and songs inspired by you, the audience.

September Grand Sumo Tournament

Held every September, this is the penultimate of Japan’s six annual Sumo Tournaments, known as honbasho. With sumo rankings released a few weeks before, it’s a chance to see the traditional sport up close and personal. Tickets on the official side are sold out, but there are some still available with a guide.

Shiba Park Oktoberfest

Despite the name, Oktoberfest will be in Shiba Park this September with German music, food, and of course, beer! Get tickets here.

256th Sakaki Festival

As part of the ceremony, a large Sakaki (it’s a variety of tree) mikoshi (portable shrine) is tied with strips of paper then carried and shaken rather vigorously on its way through the town to the shrine.

Asakusa Samba Carnival

The Asakusa Samba Carnival is usually a big, blown-out affair, but while the parade is finally back for 2023, it will be held on a slightly smaller scale than before. Reflecting Japan’s close ties with Brazil (Brazil has the largest Japanese diaspora in the world), the festival sees dancers with tiny costumes and enormous feathered head dresses.

Shibuya Konno Hachimangu Annual Festival

There are several different events taking place from September 14 to September 17, including a special prayer session, a Shinto-style dance demonstration (kagura), and the biggest of all, a large mikoshi (portable shrine) parade in Aoyama and Shibuya. The highlight is when 14 shrines converge together in front of Shibuya 109 on Sunday morning.

Fiesta Mexicana

Fiesta Mexicana takes place along the West Promenade next to the Aqua City shopping center in Odaiba. The festival will run for three days and be filled with food, fun, and entertainment. This year promises to be even bigger and better than before. The festival aims to present Mexican traditions as well as food culture.

Shinagawa Shukuba Festival

The Shinagawa Shukuba Festival, also known as the Shinagawa Shukuba Matsuri, is a festival celebrating Shinagawa’s history as the first rest stop on the Tokaidō Road heading south.

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Ultra Japan

Ultra Japan is the biggest EDM festival in the country and you don’t even need to catch the train to a paddock in the middle of nowhere to enjoy it. Beginning in 2014 and last held in 2019, the festival is part of the Ultra Music Festival global circuit including stops in Bali, Mexico, Miami and Brazil.

Death Note Exhibition

Held in Animate (one of the biggest anime stores) in Ikebukuro, the Death Note Exhibition will feature original drawings as well as merchandise — think figurines, stickers, t-shirts, and more. There will even be a certain recreated notebook on display and photo opportunities.

Motoshinmei Shrine Annual Festival

The Motoshinmei Shrine Festival happens over two days in mid-September. Both days feature food booths and activities, plus Bon dancing happening late into the evening on Saturday.

Ogikubo Hachiman Grand Festival

For lovers of Japanese culture and traditional festivals, the Ogikubo Hachiman Grand Festival is a dream come true. You’ll get a chance to explore everything from tree exhibitions to takoyaki outside the Ogikubo Hachiman Shrine.

Moon Art Night Shimokitazawa

The hip neighborhood will celebrate the start of autumn and the Japanese tradition of tsukimi (moon viewing) by holding an art festival on its streets. You can expect powerful installations, including a gigantic moon and a fluffle of lit-up bunnies.

Red Spider Lily Festival

As the Spider Lilies flower, the crowds once again gather. The Red Spider Lily or Manjushage (曼珠沙華), already a pretty little plant on its own, makes for an Instagram-winning blanket of color in the Kinchakuda fields in Hidaka, Saitama.

Hagi Festival

You must be wondering, what’s hagi? Well, it’s the Japanese name for bush clover. It might sound like a strange plant to have a festival for, but the event is more about enjoying Mukojima-Hyakkaen Gardens and its variety of beautiful fall plants.

Tokyo Disney Resort Halloween

While kids aged 11 and below are allowed to visit Disneyland and DisneySea in costume all year, Halloween is a special time when those aged 12 and up can also dress up. This year’s Disney Halloween will allow guests to dress up during the entire period from September 14 to October 31. Get tickets here.

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Filed under: Events | Things to do in Tokyo
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