A two-day festival that will transport you back in time to the traditional aesthetic streets of Edo-period Japan
Kawagoe Festival has a long-standing history of almost 370 years, said to have originated in around the mid-17th century based on the style of the Edo Tenka Matsuri (festival). Since its inception, the festival has carried on rich traditions to preserve the atmosphere of Edo-period Japan in Kawagoe: where streets lined with traditional Edo-period warehouses and shops remain to this day. This year, 19 floats from all over Kawagoe City will take part in the momentous festival.
As a result of extensive urbanization, large-scale float parades are seldom seen in Tokyo. In Kawagoe City, however, festivals are supported by the flourishing businesses of local merchants and craftsmen, who aim to pass on and preserve Edo-period festival customs for future generations to enjoy. Please come and experience the atmosphere of the Edo Period for yourself in Kawagoe City, aptly nicknamed 'Little Edo'.
A key feature of the Kawagoe Festival is that visitors can enjoy a multitude of differing festival experiences throughout the two-day period. The floats and decorations from each region of the City vary greatly, providing visitors with the opportunity to enjoy comparing the unique traits of individual regions' floats. As day turns to night, the luminescent paper lanterns and mystical tunes of traditional live music intertwine to create an otherworldly, magical experience.
All photos by Industry and Tourism Department Tourism Division of Kawagoe City Government
October 19 and 20, 2019
Location: Kawagoe City in Saitama prefecture
The Kawagoe Hikawa Shrine Festival is held on the 3rd Saturday and Sunday of October every year
As the festival is extremely lively, first-time festival participants may have difficulty getting close to the floats. For those visitors who would like to see the floats up close and enjoy participating in the festival together with the locals, planning is currently underway for a tour (including a chance to experience pulling a float!) to be held on October 21. If you are interested, find more information here: http://beauty-of-japan.com/tour/join-local-enjoy-kawagoe-matsuri/
Kawagoe Festival Museum
Lies in the north end of Kawagoe old town, the Kawagoe Festival Museum features a range of exhibitions and videos which capture the essence and atmosphere of the Kawagoe Festival, meaning guests can enjoy a taste of the real-life spectacle any time of the year!
Official site https://kawagoematsuri.jp/matsurimuseum/ (Only in Japanese)
JPY 300 (Group* : JPY 240)
JPY 100 (Group* : JPY 80) for an elementary and middle school student
* Group rate for groups of 20 or more people
(April - September) 9:30 AM - 6:30 PM *Admission until 6:00 PM
(October - March) 9:30 AM - 5:30 PM *Admission until 5:00 PM
2nd and 4th Wednesday of every month (in the case of a holiday, closed the next day)
December 29 - January 1
Temporary closed days etc.
Address 2-1-10 Moto-machi, Kawagoe-shi, Saitama, 350-0062, Japan
20-min walk from Kawagoe-shi Station on Tobu Tojo Line
15-min walk from Hon-Kawagoe Station on Seibu Shinjuku Line
30-min walk from Kawagoe Station on JR Line / Tobu Tojo Line