Even though it is scorching hot, be sure to get out and enjoy some of the fantastic events taking place this month in. Here is a list of festivals being held in and around Tokyo. Many focus on spectacular fireworks and/or traditional dancing. Check the list occasionally. As I come across other events that I think are worth sharing, I’ll add them.
7/13-8/12 Ueno Natsu Matsuri (Summer Festival), beside Shinobazu Pond, Ueno Park, Taito Ward, Tokyo. Various entertainment and Kotto Ichi (daily antique fair from 10:00-21:00). Nearest Station: Ueno
7/28-8/4 Hono Asagao-ten (Morning Glory Fair), Yasukuni Shrine, Chiyoda Ward, Tokyo. Daily 6:00-11:00am. Flowers bloom early. Nearest Station: Kudanshita then walk 5 minutes.
7/31-8/3 Tsukiji Honganji Noryo Bon Odori Taikai (traditional dance festival at Tsukiji Honganji Temple), Chuo Ward, Tokyo. 8/1-2 from 19:00 – 21:00. 8/3 from 18:00 – 20:30. Nearest Station: Tsukiji Station.
8/1-5 Fuji Five Lakes Summer Festival, Yamanashi Prefecture
8/1: 20:00-21:00 Fireworks over Lake Yamanakako (14,000)
8/2: 19:30-20:00 Fireworks over Lake Saiko (700)
8/3: 20:00-20:45 Fireworks over Lake Motosuko (1,000)
8/4: 20:00-20:15 Fireworks over Lake Kawaguchiko (1,000)
8/4: 20:00-20:30 Fireworks over Lake Shojiko (300)
8/5: 19:45-21:00 Fireworks over Lake Kawaguchiko (9,000)
Access: (1) Highway Bus (for Fuji five lakes area) from Shinjuku Sta. Bus Terminal (South Exit). (2) Fuji-Kyuko Line to Fujisan-eki Sta. or Kawaguchiko Sta., and then take bus.
8/1-4 Fussa Tanabata Matsuri (Star Festival), Fussa City, about a 90-min. train ride from Tokyo Station. Daily from 13:00 – 21:00. Various decorations of colored paper streamers and strips along the shopping streets delight the eyes of visitors. Festival is packed with events, including a ‘Princess Orihime contest’, yurukyara appearances, parades and plenty of tasty food sold at the around 100 stalls set up around the station. Access: The JR Ome Line to Fussa Station.
8/3 Edogawa Hanabi Taikai (Fireworks Display) over the Edogawa River, Edogawa Ward, Tokyo, from 7:15 pm to 8:30 pm (14,000 fireworks). Nearest Stations: Shinozaki, and then walk 15 min. (2) Koiwa Station, then walk 25 min.
8/3-4. Mito Komon Matsuri, Mito City, Ibaraki Prefecture. Festival in commemoration of the famous feudal lord in Edo period “Mito Mitsukuni” (1628-1701). “Komon” is his nickname. Various events are scheduled along National Road No.50 during the festival period. The highlight of this festival this year is Mito Komon Chochin Gyoretsu (lantern parade). Access: JR Joban Line to Mito Station (North Exit).
8/4-5 Mitama Matsuri, Soul Festival of Ikegami Honmonji Temple, Ota Ward, Tokyo. Features Bon Odori (folk dancing) in the precincts, from 7 pm to 9 pm on both days. On 8/4, the Bon Odori will parade from Honmonji-dori shopping street to the temple’s main gate (from 6:00pm). Access (1) The Toei Asakusa Subway Line to Nishi-Magome Station, and then walk 10 min. (2) The Tokyu Ikegami Line to Ikegami Station, and then walk 10 min.
8/5-7 Setomono-Ichi (Ceramic Fair), Ningyocho-dori, Chuo Ward, Tokyo. 10:00 – 20:00. Nearest Stations: Ningyocho or Suitengu-mae.
8/10 Jingu Gaien Hanabi Taikai (Fireworks Display), Jingu Kyujo Baseball Stadium, Shibuya Ward, Tokyo, from 7:30 pm to 8:30 pm (10,000 fireworks), which is preceded by music concerts. (1) at Jingu Kyujo Baseball Stadium, (2) at Chichibunomiya Rugby & Football Ground, (3) at Jingu Nanshiki Kyujo Baseball Park, etc. Tickets required. Nearest Stations: Kokuritsu Kyogijo, Shinanomachi, Sendagaya, or Gaien-mae.
8/10 Asakusa Toro Nagashi, Sumida Park, Asakusa. Lanterns are set sail on the river from 6:45pm – 8:00pm. If you’d like to participate, lanterns on sale from 2pm. Nearest Station: Asakusa.
8/11-15 Fukagawa Hachimangu Matsuri, Annual Festival of Tomioka Hachimangu Shrine, Koto Ward, Tokyo. This festival is one of the Tokyo’s Three Greatest Summer Festivals and called Mizukake Matsuri , literally meaning a festival in which local people scatter water drops over Mikoshi (portable shrines) carriers. Various events are scheduled in the precincts during the festival period. Nearest Station: Monzen-Nakacho.
8/17-18 Shimokitazawa Ichibangai Awa-odori, near Shimokitazawa Station, Setagaya Ward, Tokyo. Dancing that originated in Tokushima, Shikoku. From 6:30-8:30pm. Nearest Station: Shimokitazawa.
8/17-24 Kiyose Sunflower Festival, Ishii Farm, Kiyose City, Tokyo. 100,000 blooming flowers, sales of fresh produce,… 9am-4pm. Access: by car.
8/23-25 Asagao-ten (Morning Glory Fair), Hibiya Park, Chiyoda Ward, Tokyo. 8:00-11:30. Nearest stations: Hibiya Station or Yurakucho Station, and then walk 8 minutes.
8/24-25 Kameido Tenjin Taisai, Grand Summer Festival of Kameido Tenjin Shrine, Koto Ward, Tokyo. 8/24 from 9:00-16:00 festival music. 8/25 Shinto dance with music. The festival’s main event: 8/25 from 19:00, 1,000 Kentomyo on display (lit lanterns). *This event will be much smaller in scale than in some years. Access: Kameido Station, and then walk 15 min.
8/24-25 Azabu Juban Noryo Festival, along the shotengai, Azabu Juban, Minato Ward, Tokyo. 3pm-9pm. Closest station: Azabu Juban.
8/24-25 Koenji Awa-Odori, near Koenji Station, Tokyo. Dance originating in Tokushima, Shikoku. 10,000 dancers, from 5pm to 8pm. Nearest Station: Koenji.
8/24-25 Genki Matsuri Super Yosakoi 2019, Shibuya Ward, Tokyo. A big folk dancing event similar to that of Kochi Prefecture on Shikoku. About 100 teams from all over Japan participate. The event is held on Harajuku-Omotesando Street, at Meiji-Jingu Shrine, in Yoyogi Koen, and on Keyaki Namiki-dori in front of NHK, from 10 am to around 8:00 pm on the 24th and from 10 am to around 5:30 pm on the 25th, regardless of the weather conditions. Nearest Stations: Harajuku, Meijijingu-mae, or Omotesando.
8/31 Asakusa Samba Carnival, Asakusa, Taito Ward, Tokyo. 16 teams, in samba attire, parade along Kaminarimon-dori and Umamichi-dori streets near Sensoji Temple, from 1 pm to 6 pm. Nearest Station: Asakusa.