Tenjin Matsuri Osaka Festival, Japan

Festival History:- The Tenjin Matsuri is ranked as one of the Japan’s top three festivals with the Gion Matsuri of Kyoto along with festival which started in 10th century. The festival which started very earlier it takes place on July 24 and July 25 every year. It includes a land procession along with river procession with lots of fireworks. The festival of the Tenmangu Shrine along with its principle deity Sugawara Michizane who are considered the deity of scholarship. The lively festivals takes the wonderful occasion to enjoy hot summer day, filled with traditional costumes with celebratory atmosphere and parading throughout the city.

Festival celebration:- The main celebration gets held on festival’s second day and on the morning of the first day ( July 24) with the festival kicks off with the rituals at Tenmangu Shrine. Also, the prayers at the river are done for peace and prosperity and the drums are sounded by men with the tall red hats to inform with preparation for festivals to complete. The festivals start at 15:30 of the second day once the red hatted drummers along with land procession from Tenmangu Shrine throughout the streets of Osaka. About an hour into procession convoy carrying Mikoshi along with ornate and glided portable shrines make it the temporarily but filled with traditional costumes in a celebratory atmosphere.

The Festival food:- The procession arrives at Okawa river around 18:00 and go till night with the fireworks a part of celebration and continue till 21:00. The fireworks of the Tenjin Matsuri combined with illuminated boats and the reflections of the river makes a truly unique spectacle. The Mikoshi convoy disembarks which marks the end of the festival. People throng specially during the evenings and the spectacular fireworks can be seen easily through good vantage points. The Kawasaki bridge gets closed to pedestrians and partly because common people are not supposed to look down on shrine’s deity. The street food is also served like yakitori along with baby castella ( small sponge cakes) and takoyaki along with yakisoba is also popular which is one of the most popular food.

Festival facts:- The boat ride is done after 6 P.M. with the boarding on more than 100 boats and start sailing on the river along with the finale getting completed with fireworks which is one of the highlighted events at Tenjin Matsuri. The original fireworks called “Beni Ume” which means Japanese plum and then with the help of letter shaped fireworks the name of companies appears in sky.