** Due to COVID-19, this festival will be much reduced with no outdoor food and drink stalls, no fireworks, and a shorter procession of floats **
This yomatsuri (night festival) is one of Japan’s big three hikiyama (float) festivals (the others are the Gion Festival in Kyoto and Takayama’s autumn and spring festivals.
Chichibu Shrine itself has over 2,000 years of history. This is a great opportunity to catch an enchanting traditional festival. The large floats, apparently weighing up to 20 tons each are festooned with countless lanterns and decorated with flowers and spears. Also this is a rare opportunity to see fireworks in the winter. There will be a pre-festival the night before, with more processions on the main day – so if you’re staying in the area be sure to head down to the shrine.
Chichibu is about two hours from Tokyo, so keep an eye on trains so you can get back in time!
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5:00pm – 8:00pm
¥450 (on the door)