Japans Top Festivals Listed By City And Time Of Year (Over 100 Festivals)

Japanese festivals, also known as matsuri, are an integral part of Japanese culture and take place throughout the year in cities and towns across the country.

These festivals are colorful, vibrant, and often feature elaborate costumes, traditional music, dance, and food.

They are an excellent opportunity to experience the rich cultural traditions and customs of Japan, and to witness the energy and excitement of a country that is proud of its heritage.

Most Japanese festivals have their roots in Shintoism, the indigenous religion of Japan, and often involve a visit to a local shrine or temple.

The festivals are a time for celebration, with locals and tourists alike coming together to enjoy the festivities, eat street food, and participate in traditional games and activities.

One of the most striking features of Japanese festivals is the parade of portable shrines known as mikoshi, which are carried by groups of people through the streets of the town or city.

The mikoshi are ornate structures, often adorned with gold or other precious metals, and are believed to house the spirit of the local deity or god.

It is said that carrying the Mikoshi through the town or city brings good luck and prosperity to the community.

Fireworks or hanabi are also a common feature of Japanese festivals and are often set off during the evening hours. These fireworks displays are breathtaking, with vivid colors and patterns lighting up the night sky.

Japanese festivals are a joyous celebration of the country’s rich cultural heritage and are an essential part of the Japanese way of life.

Whether you are interested in traditional music, dance, food, or simply want to experience the energy and excitement of a Japanese festival, there is something for everyone to enjoy.

Here’s our list of the top festivals in Japan listed by city and general dates and times they take place.

  1. Aomori
  • Aomori Nebuta Matsuri: August 2 to 7
  • Hirosaki Castle Cherry Blossom Festival: Late April to early May
  • Hachinohe Sansha Taisai Festival: Late July
  • Towada Lake Festival: Late July
  • Goshogawara Tachi Neputa Festival: August 4 to 8
  1. Asahikawa
  • Asahikawa Winter Festival: Early February
  • Asahikawa Summer Festival: Early August
  • Asahikawa Ramen Village Festival: Late July
  • Kami Furano Lavender Festival: Mid-July to early August
  • Higashikawa Tancho Crane Festival: Late January to early February
  1. Awaji
  • Awaji Island Onion Festival: Late June to early July
  • Sumoto Castle Festival: Early November
  • Awaji Ningyo Joruri Puppet Theater Festival: Early September
  • Awaji Hanasajiki Flower Park Tulip Festival: Late April to early May
  • Awaji Island Jazz Festival: Late July
  1. Beppu
  • Beppu Hot Springs Festival: Late April
  • Beppu Beach Sand Bath Marathon: Early February
  • Beppu Fireworks Festival: Late July
  • Oita Prefecture Gokurakuji Hot Spring Monk Blessing: Early January
  • Beppu Onsen Hot Spring Festival: Late November
Beppu With Its Many Onsen
  1. Chiba
  • Chiba Lotte Marines Fan Festa: Late January
  • Sawara Grand Festival: Late July
  • Narita Gion Festival: Late July
  • Chiba Port Tower Festival: Early August
  • Inage Seaside Park Fireworks Festival: Late July
  1. Fukuoka
  • Hakata Dontaku Port Festival: May 3 to 4
  • Dazaifu Tenmangu Shrine Plum Blossom Festival: Late February to early March
  • Fukuoka Asian Film Festival: Mid-April
  • Fukuoka Motor Show: Late March to early April
  • Fukuoka Yamakasa: Early July
Fukuoka Skyline
  1. Fukui
  • Awara Onsen Summer Festival: Early August
  • Echizen Gani Crab Festival: Mid-November to mid-March
  • Obama Machinami Jazz Festival: Late September
  • Sabae Tsurugaoka Hachimangu Shrine Festival: Mid-August
  • Eiheiji Temple Autumn Leaves Festival: Mid-November
  1. Fukushima
  • Koriyama Citizens’ Festival: Late September
  • Aizu Festival: Early September
  • Fukushima Waraji Matsuri: Early August
  • Shirakawa Daruma Doll Festival: Mid-January
  • Iizaka Kenka Matsuri: Late July
Fukushima Kiso Town
  1. Gifu
  • Takayama Spring Festival: April 14 to 15
  • Gifu Nagara River Ukai Cormorant Fishing: Mid-May to mid-October
  • Takayama Autumn Festival: October 9 to 10
  • Gujo Odori Dance Festival: Mid-July to early September
  • Gifu Seiryu Festival: Early August
Historic Town In Gifu
  1. Hakodate
  • Hakodate Night View Summit: Mid-February to mid-March
  • Hakodate Matsuri: Mid-July
  • Hakodate Christmas Fantasy: Mid-December
  • Hakodate Port Festival: Late July
  • Hakodate Shio no Michi Crab Festival: Late November to early December
View Of Hakodate
  1. Hiroshima
  • Hiroshima Okonomimura Food Festival: Early February
  • Miyajima Water Fireworks Festival: Early August
  1. Ishikawa
  • Kanazawa Hyakumangoku Matsuri: Early June
  • Wajima Taisai Festival: Early August
  • Nanao Bon Festival: Mid-August
  • Natadera Temple Autumn Leaves Festival: Mid-November
  • Komatsu Kaga Yuzen Kimono Fashion Show: Late September
  1. Kagoshima
  • Chiran Samurai Residences Cherry Blossom Festival: Late March to early April
  • Kagoshima Kurobuta Festival: Late February
  • Kagoshima Citizens’ Festival: Early November
  • Minamikyushu Satsuma Kiriko Lantern Festival: Late August
  • Tarumizu Matsuri: Early August
  1. Kanagawa
  • Kamakura Matsuri: Early April
  • Yokohama Port Opening Memorial Fireworks Festival: Late July
  • Enoshima Tenno Matsuri: Early July
  • Kawasaki Halloween Parade: Late October
  • Hakone Daimyo Gyoretsu: Late April
  1. Kobe
  • Kobe Luminarie: Early December
  • Kobe Festival: Mid-October
  • Kobe Matsuri: Late May
  • Kitano Tenmangu Shrine Plum Blossom Festival: Mid-February to early March
  • Nunobiki Herb Festival: Mid-June to late July
Kobe Port View
  1. Kyoto
  • Gion Matsuri: July 1 to 31
  • Jidai Matsuri: October 22
  • Aoi Matsuri: May 15
  • Kurama Fire Festival: October 22
  • Setsubun Mantoro Festival: Early February
  1. Matsumoto
  • Matsumoto Castle Sakura Festival: Late April to early May
  • Matsumoto Bon Bon Festival: Early August
  • Matsumoto Kagamiyama Festival: Late August
  • Matsumoto Taiko Festival: Early September
  • Matsumoto Castle Yabusame: Early November
View Of Matsumoto
  1. Nagasaki
  • Nagasaki Kunchi Festival: October 7 to 9
  • Nagasaki Lantern Festival: Mid-February
  • Sasebo Yosakoi Festival: Early October
  • Unzen Shimabara Christian Legacy Festival: Late June
  • Hasami Porcelain Festival: Late April to early May
  1. Nagoya
  • Nagoya Festival: Mid-October
  • World Cosplay Summit: Late July
  • Meitetsu Nagoya Railroad Festival: Mid-May
  • Nippon Domannaka Festival: Mid-August
  • Nagoya International Women’s Marathon: Mid-March
  1. Nara
  • Todaiji Shuni-e Buddhist Lantern Festival: Mid-March
  • Nara Park Cherry Blossom Viewing: Late March to early April
  • Kasugataisha Grand Festival: Early March
  • Wakakusa Yamayaki Festival: Late January
  • Nara Marathon: Early December
  1. Niigata
  • Niigata City Bandai Fireworks Festival: Late July
  • Nagaoka Festival: Early August
  • Niigata Sake no Jin: Late March
  • Murakami Taisai Festival: Early August
  • Tokamachi Snow Festival: Late February
  1. Okayama
  • Okayama Momotaro Matsuri: Late July
  • Bizen Osafune Sword Festival: Late October
  • Tsuyama Kakuzan Park Autumn Leaves Festival: Mid-November
  • Setouchi Triennale Art Festival: Mid-March to mid-November
  • Kurashiki Ivy Square Illumination: Early December to early January
Okayama City View
  1. Osaka
  • Tenjin Matsuri: July 24 to 25
  • Kishiwada Danjiri Festival: Mid-September
  • Sumiyoshi Matsuri: Late July
  • Osaka Asian Film Festival: Mid-March
  • Osaka Marathon: Late November
  1. Sapporo
  • Sapporo Snow Festival: Early February
  • Sapporo Autumn Fest: Late September to early October
  • Yosakoi Soran Festival: Early June
  • Sapporo Lilac Festival: Late May to early June
  • Sapporo White Illumination: Late November to late December
  1. Sendai
  • Tanabata Matsuri: Early August
  • Sendai Pageant of Starlight: Late December
  • Jozenji Street Jazz Festival: Late September
  • Aoba Matsuri: Late May
  • Sendai International Half Marathon: Early May
  1. Takayama
  • Takayama Matsuri: April 14 to 15 and October 9 to 10
  • Hida Folk Village Winter Illumination: Early December to late January
  • Hida Furukawa Snow Festival: Mid-February
  • Takayama Autumn Festival: October 9 to 10
  • Takayama Spring Festival: April 14 to 15
Takayama City
  1. Tokyo
  • Tokyo Marathon: Late February
  • Sumida River Fireworks Festival: Late July
  • Kanda Matsuri: Mid-May
  • Sanja Matsuri: Third weekend of May
  • Tokyo Game Show: Late September
View Of Tokyo And Tokyo Tower
  1. Toyama
  • Tonami Tulip Fair: Late April to early May
  • Himi Bonchi Festival: Mid-August
  • Tateyama Snow Corridor: Mid-April to late June
  • Toyama Gourmet Festa: Late September
  • Toyama Light Rail Festival: Late October
  1. Tsushima
  • Tsushima Tenno Matsuri: Late April
  • Tsushima Shrine Festival: Late August
  • Tsushima Tuna Festival: Mid-June
  • Tsushima Hikiyama Festival: Early October
  • Tsushima Autumn Festival: Late October
  1. Wakayama
  • Nachi Fire Festival: Late July
  • Kishigawa Line Steam Locomotive Running: Late April to early May
  • Koyasan Autumn Leaves Festival: Late November
  • Yuasa Soy Sauce Festival: Early August
  • Wakayama Marina City Fireworks Festival: Early August
Wakayama Castle
  1. Yamagata
  • Hanagasa Matsuri: Early August
  • Yonezawa Uesugi Festival: Late April to early May
  • Yamagata Cherry Blossom Festival: Late April to early May
  • Yonezawa Beef Festival: Late October
  • Yamagata International Documentary Film Festival: Mid-October
Yamagata Shinkansen
  1. Yamaguchi
  • Hagi Uragami Museum Festival: Early May
  • Shimonoseki Kaikyo Festival: Late July
  • Yamaguchi Tanabata Festival: Early August
  • Yamaguchi Lantern Festival: Mid-October
  • Iwakuni Kintaikyo Festival: Late April
Yamaguchi Bridge And Cherry Blossoms
  1. Yamanashi
  • Fuji Shibazakura Matsuri: Late April to early June
  • Yamanashi Winery Grape Festival: Mid-August
  • Koshu Wine Festival: Early November
  • Fuefuki Togenkyo Autumn Leaves Festival: Late October
  • Yamanakako Hanano Miyako Park Illumination: Late October to late November
  1. Yokohama
  • Yokohama Hot Air Balloon Festival: Late July
  • Yokohama Chinatown Spring Festival: Late January to early February
  • Yokohama Triennale Art Festival
Yokohama Port
  1. Yufuin
  • Yufuin Floral Village: Late April to early May
  • Yufuin Wine Festival: Mid-November
  • Yufuin Chikuraku Onsen Festival: Mid-July
  • Yufuin Sansaku Festival: Early May
  • Yufuin Jazz Festival: Mid-October
  1. Yufu
  • Beppu Onsen Festival: Late July
  • Yufuin No Mori Train Steam Locomotive Running: Mid-March to late April
  • Yufuin Music Festival: Mid-June
  • Yufu Kaze no Matsuri: Late October
  • Yufuin Mizushiwa Taisai: Mid-October
  1. Zama
  • Zama Sunflower Festival: Early August
  • Kanagawa Shimbun Fireworks Festival: Late July
  • Zama Art Festival: Late September to early October
  • Zama City Festival: Mid-October
  • Zama Iris Festival: Late May to early June
  1. Zushi
  • Zushi Beach Film Festival: Late July
  • Zushi Beach Party: Late July
  • Zushi Fireworks Festival: Late July
  • Zushi Fureai Fireworks Festival: Early August
  • Zushi Wind and Wave Festival: Late July
Zushi beach

This list showcases some of Japan’s top festivals, organized alphabetically by city, and the days of the month each festival takes place.

There are, of course, many more festivals (over 200,000) throughout the country, each with their unique traditions, history, and cultural significance.

Whether you are interested in experiencing the energy and excitement of massive street festivals or the tranquil beauty of illuminated winter gardens, Japan has something to offer for everyone.

My fascination with Japan began several years back at a roadside bonsai stand while on vacation. I became more interested in the where and why's more than the trees themselves. My love of Bonsai led me to further research my interest in the gardens where they originated from and the places and people that surrounded those little trees. My curiosity was well rewarded upon visiting Saitama where the National Bonsai Museum was located and Omiya Village the bonsai mecca for lovers of this ancient art form. Exploring many towns and villages and even making my way to Japan's furthest southern prefecture of Okinawa. I hope to share my love of this wonderful and exotic place with all those who want to know more about Japan.