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Story “Mizuakari Festival” in Kumamoto City – mesmerizing scenes at the water’s edge By JNTO on 01 September 2017

Kumamoto Kurashibito Festival


Kumamoto Kurashibito Festival


white wax extracted from the fruit of 250-year-old wax trees


This festival presents the best of local resources Kumamoto offers such as “bamboo”, “fire”, “water” and “candles”. For two nights in autumn, the areas around Kumamoto Castle are lit up with about 54,000 candles. Being operated solely by volunteers, the festival is held in hopes for the rediscovery of Kumamoto’s charms. A ceremony of votive candles is held in front of a sacred camphor tree and shrine maidens perform graceful dances in Hanabata Park, located in the center of the city. One of the highlights is the “floating lanterns” on the Tsuboi River, which acts as a moat for Kumamoto Castle. Some 5,000 floating lanterns on the river create an otherworldly beauty on these two special Kumamoto, autumn nights. After being used in this event, the “bamboo” is reused as bamboo charcoal, compost, or bamboo chips as a part of the efficient and eco-friendly use of natural resources. The “fire” used at this event is kindled from the crater of Mt. Aso, which is the symbol of Kumamoto. After the Shinto ritual held in Hanabata Park, the shrine maidens light up each bamboo “bonbori (dedicated lanterns)” for visitors. The “water” is drawn from a spring by volunteer staff on the previous day of the event. The “candles” are made from white wax extracted from the fruit of 250-year-old wax trees in Minamata City, Kumamoto Prefecture, which boasts the largest production volume of candles in Japan. This event will be held on October 7th and 8th this year.

October 7, 2017, lighting time from 18:00 to 22:00
October 8, 2017, lighting time from 18:00 to 22:00


The 14th Kumamoto Kurashibito Festival Mizu Akari

Hanabata-cho, Chuo-ku, Kumamoto City
not available

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