• Festivals's photo

Festivals

Takayama city, Gujo city, Hida city


In spring and autumn, the brilliant Takayama Festival lights up the town.

The ornate yatai floats at the Takayama Festival are praised as “moving gates of light." The splendid decorations and elegant appearance of the Takayama Festival are enough for it to be counted among the Japan's three most beautiful festivals (together with Kyoto Gion Festival and Chichibu Yomatsuri). A line of several hundred people leads the yatai floats through the town streets—a spectacular sight! There are 12 yatai floats in spring and 11 in autumn—the yatai in spring feature giant mechanical dolls, while the autumn yatai have tires and are pulled by ropes. When the sun sinks, the yatai floats are illuminated by lanterns, brilliantly transformed to create a breathtaking, fantastic scene.

  • Festivals's photo
  • Festivals's photo

Locals and tourists dance for 30 nights during the Gujo Odori dance festival.

Dancing is central to Japanese festivals! The Gujo Odori Festival is perfect for people who love to move their body. This festival has been in existence for more than 400 years (since the Edo era). It is said to have originated when separate small bon odori dance ceremonies were combined at this castle town. Held from mid-July to early September, it's distinctive because local people and tourists mingle and dance together. The festival peaks on the nights of August 13 to 16, when the dancing continues right through the night until morning. The myriad of lanterns swaying in the September make finale something memorable. The Memorial Hall also holds a bon odori lecture, which visitors are encouraged to join.

  • Festivals's photo
  • Festivals's photo
  • Festivals's photo
  • Festivals's photo

Rowdy, playful men beat the drums at the Furukawa Festival.

Even within Japan, the Furukawa Festival is considered unique, and it has gained popularity in recent years. The main role is played by huge okoshi daiko drums, beaten by shirtless men with cloth wrapped around torso, who parade the streets while sounding the massive drums. The whole area is caught up in a strange fervor and a resounding roar, and the crowd whipped into a vortex of excitement. This sensation is instantly addictive. Conversely, the next morning the atmosphere changes, as the beautiful yatai floats parade through the streets, solemn and righteous. These contrasting two days will leave you with a deeper impression of the festival.

  • Festivals's photo
  • Festivals's photo
  • Festivals's photo
  • Festivals's photo

For reference

Takayama Festival

  • 
Address
    Spring: 156 Shiroyama, Takayama-shi (Hida Sanno-gu Hie Shrine)
    
Autumn: 178 Sakuramachi, Takayama-shi (Sakurayama Hachiman Shrine)

  • Telephone
    0577-32-3333 (Takayama Tourism Department)

  • Event dates
    Spring: April 14 & 15 every year
    Autumn: October 9 & 10 every year


  • URL

Gujo Odori

  • Address
    Hachiman-cho, Gujo-shi, Gifu-ken
  • Telephone
    0575-67-0002 (Gujo Hachiman Tourism Association)
  • Event dates
    Saturday and Sunday from mid July to early September. The main events will take place from August 13 to 16.
  • URL

Furukawa Festival

  • 
Address
    Furukawa-cho, Hida-shi, Gifu-ken
  • Telephone
    0577-73-2111 (Hida Tourism Department)

  • Event dates
    April 19 & 20 every year

Access

Takayama Festival
  • 
Toyama Kitokito Airport is a 1-hour flight from Haneda Airport.
  • Toyama Kitokito Airport is a 90-minute flight from Sapporo’s New Chitose Airport.
  • JR Toyama Station is 25 minutes by shuttle bus from Toyama Kitokito Airport.
  • JR Takayama Station is 105 minutes from JR Toyama Station. Both Takayama festivals are within 15-minute driving distance from JR Takayama Station.
  • *Please note that traffic is restricted on festival days.
Gujo Odori Dance Festival

  • Chubu Centrair International Airport is a 1-hour flight from Haneda Airport.
  • Chubu Centrair International Airport is a 100-minute flight from Sapporo’s New Chitose Airport.
  • Chubu Centrair International Airport is a 75-minute flight from Sendai Airport.
  • Chubu Centrair International Airport is a 65-minute flight from Matsuyama Airport.
  • Meitetsu Gifu Station is 1 hour via Kintetsu limited express train from Chubu Centrair International Airport.
  • Gujo Hachiman Station is 80 minutes from Meitetsu Gifu Station on the Hachiman route highway bus.

Furukawa Festival
  • Toyama Kitokito Airport is a 1-hour flight from Haneda Airport.
  • Toyama Kitokito Airport is a 90-minute flight from Sapporo’s New Chitose Airport.
  • JR Toyama Station is 25 minutes by shuttle bus from Toyama Kitokito Airport.
JR Hida-Furukawa Station is 75 minutes from JR Toyama Station.

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