2019 Japanese Lantern Festivals: Tokyo, Osaka, Hokkaido, Okinawa & More

22.February.2019 | SPOT

Lantern events take place in Japan throughout the whole year. The country sees many types of lanterns decorating the atmosphere from sky lanterns that float up into the night sky to towering lantern monuments, colourful lanterns that hang like paper lanterns and more.

 

Many of these events take place in February and March and bustle with locals and people visiting from all over the country. Since last year, Hankyu Travel International has listed the lantern festivals taking place across Japan.

 

Here are some of  the major events taking place this year. There are many to look forward to each with a different origin and meaning whether it be for religious reasons or for festive fun.

 

Hokkaido Event

17th Takikawa Kamibukuro Paper Lantern Festival

Date: February 23, 2019

Location: Area from Takikawa Station to Bell Road

Address: 2 Chome-8-9 Sakaemachi, Takikawa, Hokkaido

 

The Takikawa Kamibukuro Lantern Festival sees paper lanterns handcrafted by the local residents of Takikawa. Each design is entirely different from the next, so simply looking at them is enough to warm your heart.

 

Iwate Prefecture Event

Hanamaki Hoshi Meguro no Yoru

Running: February 3, 2019 / February 11, 2019 / February 14, 2019

Location: Namari Ski Cente

Address: Nakadaira-36-1 Namari, Hanamaki, Iwate Prefecture

 

This wintertime event is exclusive to guests staying with Hanamaki Onsen.

 

Tokyo & Osaka Event

Tanabata Sky Lantern Festival

Running: July 6, 2019 – July 7, 2019

Location: Tokyo and Osaka

Address: TBA

 

10,000 lanterns will be launched into the night in Tokyo and Osaka in this two-day event, creating a starry sky.

 

Niigata Prefecture Events

Tsunan Yuki Matsuri Sky Lantern

Date: March 9, 2019 (Pre-event to take place on March 8 too)

Location: New Green Pia Tsunan

Address: 12300 Akinari, Tsunan-machi, Nakauonuma District, Niigata Prefecture

 

The town of Tsunan in Niigata has held this sky lantern festival since 2012 to offer prayers towards the reconstruction work after the Great East Japan Earthquake of 2011. 1,000 lanterns will rise into the sky during the March 8 pre-festival and 2,000 the following day for the main event.

 

Niigata Tsunan Sky Lantern Festival

Running: March 17, 2019 / March 21, 2019 / March 22, 2019

Location: New Green Pia Tsunan

Address: 12300 Akinari, Tsunan-machi, Nakauonuma District, Niigata Prefecture

 

Hankyu Travel International has a range of events planned for this festival including sky lanterns, fireworks, food and more.

 

Nagasaki Prefecture Event

Nagasaki Lantern Festival

Running: February 5, 2019 – February 19, 2019

Locations: Nagasaki Chinatown, Central Park and elsewhere

Address: Nagasaki, Nagasaki Prefecture

 

Every year the Nagasaki Lantern Festival sees over 1 million people in attendance. The event grown and expanded from a celebration of Chinese New Year from the people of Nagasaki Chinatown.

 

Okinawa Prefecture Event

Ryukyu Lantern Festival 2018-2019

Running: December 1, 2018 – March 3, 2019

Address: Murasaki Mura Ryukyu Kingdom Theme Park

Address: 1020-1 Takashiho, Yomitan-son, Nakagami District, Okinawa Prefecture

 

The Ryukyu Lantern Festival has been taking place since December last year at Murasaki Mura, a theme park that reproduces the city of Naha when Okinawa was known as the Ryukyu Kingdom in the 14th and 15th centuries. The event has a magical atmosphere with its Chinese lanterns, Japanese paper lanterns and more.

 

Be sure to use this list as reference if any of these events take your fancy and make some wonderful memories.

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