Festivals in the Myoko Kogen Region

Tozaki Naked Festival

For some reason, people in Japan love to get the clothes off and parade around near naked during festivals.

On January 17th of each year the residents of the Tozaki area near Noh brave the cold, and clad only in a loin cloth perform a ceremony where they toss people into the air.

At the beginning of the festival, they purify their bodies with water (and sake) and then call out to people to join them. These guest are then hoisted high into the air and hopefully caught on the way down.

The volume is intense and copious amounts of sake are consumed in the process.

Access is by train from Myoko Kogen to Noh, and then taking a bus (15 minutes) to Tozaki.

 

Oumi Bamboo Festival

On January 15th of each year the residents of Oumi town, dressed in Kabuki Style clothing, just west of Itoigawa engage in a tug-of-war using bamboo poles. It is thought that the winners will enjoy a great rice harvest and fish will be bountiful.

This festival traces it’s roots back over 300years and is one of the more unique festivals in Japan.

While it is easy to access by public transport using the Echigo Tokimeki Rail Co lines, it does take some time to get here.

From Myoko Kogen take a train into Naoetsu Station (Myoko – Haneuma Line) and then transfer to the Nihonkai – Hisui Line to Oumi.

 

 

Lantern Road

Held in late February every year, residents of Joetsu City decorate the streets with over 100,000 lanterns.

Young and old residents create their own unique lanterns and display them along the sides of pathways and shrines.

There are 6 locations in the city that display the lanterns and residents also set up stalls selling food and drinks.

The areas are all over the outskirts of Joetsu City and only a couple can be visited in a single night.

A fun way to spend an evening and experience a traditional Japanese festival.

Note there is only limited parking available so public transport is a better option.

 

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