Festivals & Events
Miyoshi Bondensai Festival 三吉梵天祭
A colorful festival and race to carry sacred wands to a shrine
Miyoshi Bondensai is a festival that happens every January in Akita Prefecture . In this local festival, groups of children, townspeople and even company employees carry four-meter-long sacred wands called bonden to Miyoshi-jinja Shrine on Mt. Taiheizan.
- The range of beautiful designs and colorful markings on the bonden
- Bonden fighting and the grappling that reaches its peak around noon as men race to be first to the shrine
- The sight of attendees trying to touch the triangular charms hanging from the bonden that are believed to contain divine power
How to Get There
Miyoshi Shrine is accessible by bus from Akita Station.
From Akita Station's east exit, take the bus bound for Akita Chuo Kotsu Bus Taiheisan and get off at Miyoshi-jinja Iriguchi. Miyoshi-jinja Shrine is a two-minute walk from the bus stop.
Markers for the gods
Bonden, made of colorful fabric, are said to act as markers for gods descending to the world. After being dedicated to the shrine, the bonden are placed neatly in the precincts, their colors providing a beautiful contrast against the snow-covered buildings.
Like any other attendee, you can try to touch the triangular charms on the bonden during the race to receive some divine power.