Japan is also known as a country that is filled with quirky and weird things… and we love Japan for that! In the country, expressing one’s feelings, passion and beliefs in a creative and extraordinary way is accepted. This is evident in the list of Kisai (bizarre festivals) the Japanese have celebrated ever since. If you want to witness how these unusual festivals are being celebrated, visit Japan and rent a furnished apartment at KaguAruoo. With KaguAruoo, the conventional rental process is being replaced with a more convenient and hassle-free way.
Get ready as we list some of the bizarre festivals of Japan.
This festival is being held every 7 years and has been celebrated for more than 1,200 years. As a matter of fact, the next Onbashira Matsuri will be in April 2023. During the festival, 16 enormous trunks of the fir trees, weighing 10 tons, will be transported by hand to the shrines of Suwa in Nagano Prefecture. During the process of transporting the logs, men would face difficult terrains which would test their strength in carrying the logs while some would ride atop the logs during downhill areas of the route. The logs will then be planted on the grounds as the shrine’s four corners. Due to the intense activity, some residents will get injured and unfortunately will wound up dead during the process. Even so, the celebration of the Onbashi Matsuri is still being celebrated up to this day.
This festival is locally known as the Fire and Violence Festival or the Rampage Festival. Held every summer (first Friday and Saturday of July) at Noto Peninsula, this raucous and violent ceremony is believed to repeal diseases from the people. The festival was celebrated a long time ago when the town experienced a deadly disease that has infected a large portion of the population. The townsfolk were given advice to launch a festival that will drive away the disease from infecting further. Truthfully, after the festival was held for the first time, the infected locals were cured. Since then, the Abare Matsuri has been celebrated annually. True to its name, the participants of the festival participated in throwing and shattering big lantern floats and replicas of the shrines. Aside from destroying the structures, they pour in sake and throw them into the fire.
Naked Men Festivals
All over Japan, there are two festivals consisting of naked men being celebrated. In the first month of each year, the Hanamaki City of Iwate Prefecture celebrates the Hanamaki Souminsai. This festival has the local men walk half-naked through the cold snowy mountains, bearing a torch in their hands and a paper with blessings in their mouth. Once the men reached the top of the mountain, they would fight over a pouch which is known to bring good luck to anyone who can successfully take it. Another festival which is being held every February is the Saidaiji Eyo Hadaka Matsuri or popularly known as the Naked Man Festival. The entrants are stripped down from their clothing and must wear the traditional loin cloth and tabi socks. Some 30,000 participants are linked arms to arms while making their way to the crowd and into the temple, bracing themselves as the temperature is near sub-zero. The main event of the festival is the gathering of the participants for the battle of getting hold of small Kushigo sticks which are given away into the temple grounds. Later that night, the priest of the temple then released the much awaited last two Shingi sticks into the temple grounds. Anyone who was able to get their hands on one of the sticks will receive good fortune for the year ahead.
This festival is a festival one might enjoy or avert from. The Kanamara Matsuri or the Penis Festival showcases a large mikoshi in the form of a penis being paraded in the streets around the Kanayama Shrine. The festival is held every first Sunday in April. Aside from the large penis mikoshi, you can also see foods and souvenirs in the shape of the penis being sold from stalls. The Japanese people believe that the festival brings blessings to couples with infertility problems, healthy childbirth and strong marriage.
If you are getting bored of the traditional festivals in Japan that you have experienced, it is time to open your minds and embrace the peculiarities of Japanese culture. Being able to celebrate these festivals in person is one way of understanding Japan. In Japan, no one or nothing is weird, as they give appreciation and respect to all things in the world.
Celebrate these bizarre festivals in Japan. Visit KaguAruoo and secure a furnished apartment in Tokyo or all over Japan. Renting a furnished apartment in Japan will save you a great deal of money. Purchasing furniture and appliances will indeed cost a lot of money. Aside from being economical, you can immediately move-in to the listing after landing in Japan.