July 2018: Events in and around Tokyo

Rainy season has ended early and its going to be a hot, humid summer. It was the earliest end on record, tied for the shortest rainy season in recorded history. Water levels are low, so take care to conserve water. That said, there are many fantastic events happening in and around Tokyo this month. Put on some sunscreen and get out to enjoy the fun!

7/5-9 Shitamachi Tanabata Matsuri (Star Festival), Kappabashi, Nishi-Asakusa, Tokyo. Access: Tawaramachi Station or Asakusa Station and short walk.

7/6-8 Iriya Asagao Matsuri (Morning Glory Fair), Iriya Kishimojin Temple, Toshima Ward, Tokyo. 5:00-23:00. Stalls selling potted morning glories, wind chimes, goldfish, etc. are set up in the precincts of the temple.  Access:  Arakawa Line’s Kishibojim-mae Station / Fukutoshin subway line to Zoshigaya Station, then walk 5 min. / JR Yamanote line to Ikebukuro Station (East Exit), then walk 15 min.

7/6-8  Iriya Asagao Ichi (Morning Glory Fair), Shingenji/Kishimojin Temple, Kototoi-dori, Taito Ward, Tokyo 6:00-23:00. Around 60 stalls selling morning glories and 80 open-air stalls are set up in the precincts of the temple and on Kototoi-dori.  Access:  Hibiya line to Iriya Station./ Jr Yamanote or Keihin Tohoku line to Uguisudani Station (South Exit), then walk 3 min.

7/6-8 Shonan Hiratsuka Tanabata Matsuri (Star Festival), Hiratsuka City, Kanagawa Prefecture. Access: Near Hiratsuka Stations North Exit. Check out this website for schedule of events: http://www.tanabata-hiratsuka.com/global-image/units/upfiles/9292-1-20180627164436_b5b334064849fa.pdf

7/6-8  Narita Gion Matsuri (Annual Festival of Naritasan Shinshoji Temple), Narita City, Chiba Prefecture.  Access:  Near Narita Station & Keisei Narita Station.

7/7-8  Enoshima Tenno-sai (Annual Festival of 2 shrines), Fujisawa City, Kanagawa Prefecture. Yomiya evening festival held from 18:00 on 7th, Shikosai main festival held from 9:30 on 8th. Access:  15 min walk from Katase-Enoshima Station or Enoshima Station. http://travelenoshima.jp/festival/tennosai.html

7/9-10  Hozuki Ichi (Ground Cherry Fair), Sensoji Temple, Asakusa, Taito Ward, Tokyo 8:00-21:00, around 100 stalls selling ground cherries and wind chimes.  Access:  5 min walk from Asakusa Station.

7/13-15  Tsukudajima Bon Odori (Folk dancing Festival), Tsukishima, Chuo Ward, Tokyo. Starting from 19:00.  If it rains, the festival will be canceled.  Access:  Yurakucho line or Toei Oedo line to Tsukishima Station, then walk 7 min. http://www.bonodori.net/zenkoku/tsukudajima/tukudajima_top.html

7/13-16  Mitama Matsuri (‘Soul’ Festival of Yasukuni Shrine), Chiyoda Ward, Tokyo  Daily from 18:00.  Access:  Tozai, Hanzomon, or Toei Shinjuku line to Kudanshita Station, then walk 5 min.

7/14  Mizudome-no-Mai (Dance of 3 Lions & 2 Dragons), Gonshoji Temple, Ota Ward, Tokyo  13:00-15:00, dance of three Shishi lions and two dragons to pray for rain to stop.  Access:  Keikyu line to Omorimachi Station, then walk 8 min. http://www.mizudome.com/tradition/makeryujin

7/13-15  Sawara-no-Taisai Natsu Matsuri (Summer Festival), Sawara main street, Katori, Chiba Prefecture.  The highlight of this festival is a parade of 10 beautiful floats topped with large-size dolls modeled after historical figures, birds, beasts and others on the main streets of the city. 10:00-22:00 parade of floats.  Access:  JR Narita Line to Sawara Station, then walk 10 min.

7/14-16 Oedo Hawaii Festival, Belle Salle Hall, Nihonbashi, Tokyo. Festival celebrating both Hawaiian and Japanese culture. 80 acts – from taiko drumming, shamisen, swordsmanship, hula, Japanese dance, and lots of food. In an underground, air-conditioned hall. 10:00-18:00, Tickets 1000 yen. Closest station: Nihonbashi. http://oedohawaiifes.com/

7/14-8/12 Ueno Natsu Matsuri (Summer Festival), Ueno Park and surroundings.  Daily antique fair, floating lanterns, parades, etc. Access:  JR Yamanote line, Ginza or Hibiya line to Ueno Station.

7/18-22  Kawasaki Daishi Furin-Ichi (Wind Chime Market), Kawasaki Daishi Temple, Kawasaki City, Kanagawa Prefecture.  Access:  Close to Kawasaki-Daishi Station. https://en.japantravel.com/kanagawa/kawasaki-daishi-furin-ichi/4783

7/19-20  Chichibu Kawase Matsuri (Annual Festival of Chichibu Shrine), Chichibu, Saitama Prefecture. The festival is modeled after Kyoto’s Gion Matsuri. Parade with floats on the 19th. Parade with 400-kg portable shrine cleansed in river.  Close to Chichibu Station and Seibu-Chichibu Station.

7/20 Sumomo Matsuri, Okunitama Shrine, Fuchu, Tokyo. A festival named after the plum warlord Minamoto Yoryoshi offered the gods here. Access: Short walk from Fuchu or Fuchu-Honmachi Station.

7/20-22 Tokyo Hula Festival in Ikebukuro, Sunshine City and around Ikebukuro Station, Tokyo. Bands, performances (including 170 teams of 5,000 dancers on 6 stages), food, etc. Closest stations: Ikebukuro & Higashi-Ikebukuro.

7/24  Katsushika Noryo Hanabi Taikai (Fireworks Display), along the Edogawa River, Shibamata, Katsushika Ward, Tokyo.  19:20-20:20.  Access:  Keisei Kanamachi line to Shibamata Station, then walk 10 minutes.

7/25-28  Kagurazaka Matsuri (Summer Festival), Kagurazaka main street, Shinjuku Ward, Tokyo.  *25-26 is Ground Cherry Fair from 17:30-22:00, 27-28 is Awa Odori Dance Festival from 19:00-21:00.  Access:  Yurakucho, Tozai, or Namboku line to Iidabashi Station, Exit B3.

7/24  Kamakura Hanabi Taikai (Fireworks Display), Zaimokuza & Yuigahama Beaches, Kamakura, Kanagawa Prefecture. 19:20-20:10.  Access:  JR Yokosuka line to Kamakura Station, then walk 15 min. Or, Wadazuka, Yugahama, or Hase Stations on the Enoden Line. https://www.city.kamakura.kanagawa.jp/kamakura-kankou/event/0724hanabi.html

7/28 17th Shinjuku Eisa Festival, East Exit Shinjuku Station, Tokyo. Over 20 Okinawan Eisa dance troupes perform to mark the end of Obon. 12:00-20:00. http://www.shinjuku-eisa.com

7/28  Sumidagawa Hanabi Taikai (Fireworks Festival), Sumida River, Taito Ward, Tokyo. Starts at 19:00.  About 22,000 fireworks over the river.  Depending on weather conditions, the event may be postponed to the next day.  Access:  Close to Kuramae, Asakusa, & Asakusabashi Stations.

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