I’m a little late in writing this along with a series of other summer related blogs, but hopefully the pictures will warm you up as it begins to get colder outside.
This time I’d like to talk about the festival I went to in Gifu Prefecture. Gifu is adjacent to where I currently live and is only about fifteen minutes away by train. Therefore, I decided to go to one of the biggest festivals being held in Japan consisting of hundreds of thousands of people. Even before we approached the event grounds people were gathering around the station in order to take one of the series of shuttles that had been running throughout the entire event.
Once we made our way through the masses, we found a bus and packed ourselves in nice and tightly. Upon arriving at the grounds, it seemed impossible for the entire area to be so completely filled with people. However, after living in Japan for a year, you get used to the sheer numbers that gather for various events. Keep in mind, in the pictures below the crowd numbers more than doubled after dark.
For those unfamiliar with Japanese fireworks festivals, it is expected for there to be stalls with foods and snacks similar to a county fair in the states. People tend to bring their own drinks to go along with these snacks.
It is also common to see Japanese people wearing traditional clothing at an event such as this. They most commonly wear a Yukata or a Jinbei. The best comparison I can give for that is a stylish bathrobe. Some are decorated simply with stripes and others have complex designs with flowers or animals.
Of course the main event at festivals such as these are the fireworks at night. Everyone comes and gathers along the river in order to see the spectacle put on by the city.
Anyone living in Japan will tell you how spectacular the fireworks are at these festivals. They are possibly some of the best fireworks in the world. On top of the show, it creates an opportunity for the people living here to relax and enjoy something that brings everyone together. I try to make it to at least one firework festival each year and so far I am 2 for 2. I am already looking forward to next years fireworks as I’m writing this.
I hope you enjoyed the pictures, thanks for reading!.