There are many World Heritage sites and facilities in Japan. For example, Mount Koya, Kumano Kodo, Mount Fuji, Atomic Bomb Dome, and Horyuji Temple. However, there is only one Japanese castle registered as a World Heritage Site. That is Himeji Castle.
The “Himeji Castle Festival” held in Himeji is a historical festival that has continued for over 70 years. It is held every weekend in the middle of May at Himeji Castle Sannomaru Square and Otemae Park in Hyogo Prefecture. Every day, events are held based on the theme of the day.
The festival started as a symbol of post-war reconstruction of Himeji Castle, which remained miraculously unbroken after the war. The origin dates back to 1948, just after the war. The first Himeji Castle Festival was held to celebrate the birth of the new Himeji city. For Himeji citizens, this festival was their spiritual home that was damaged by war.
Unlike other festivals in this festival, it is a complex type festival. Actually, there is a small festival (event) in the Himeji Castle Festival. In other words, there are several small festivals that make up the Himeji Castle Festival.
At the “Kokorofurueru Banshu Festival”, you can see the assembly of the Festival Float at the Banshu Festival, which you don’t usually see, and experience the workshop, the lighting of the Mini Festival Float, and the projection mapping.
At the “Himeji Yosakoi Festival”, about 50 teams from around the country participate in the event, mainly in the local Himeji City and the neighboring Kakogawa City. You will be overwhelmed by the powerful performances that have been practiced for this day. The moment when the audience and dancers come together will be an unforgettable experience. In addition, about 10 events will be held.
Himeji Castle Festival is not a festival that highlights this, but an image that has many small events. It is rare that there is a festival in the festival. It may be confusing at first, but you will find it innovative and fun.
However, there are many events, so those who participate in the family may be swayed by their children, “Go over there!” “Go over here!”
“Himeji Castle Takigi-Noh” and “Parade”
The origin of “Himeji Castle Festival” began by making Himeji Castle, which remained miraculously in the urban area which became ruins after the war, a symbol of the postwar reconstruction of Himeji city. “Himeji Castle Festival” began as a “festival” which is the basis of the citizen’s heart. The first festival began in April 1952. The “Queen of the castle” which is also a highlight of the Himeji Castle Festival was born in August of 1964 when the first queen was born.
Highlights of the Castle Festival are “Himeji Castle Takigi-Noh” and “Parade” to be held in Otemae Street. Both are very popular events, so it’s a good idea to reserve a place to see in advance. Also, if you are traveling with children, play equipment of “kids land” held in Otemae Park is recommended. Especially the parade to be held on the second day is very popular. There are two “citizen parade” and “era parade”, they will walk from Himeji station to Otemae park. Every year at this festival there is an announcement and change of “Queen of the castle”, the newly selected “Queen of the castle” will also appear in the citizen parade. Another parade is an era parade, here you can see historical castle owners of Himeji Castle, Senhime’s weddings and more. There is also a child daimyo procession, and you can also enjoy a cute parade. After the parade there is a “total dance” that you can join on the spot so you can dance with them after watching the parade.
In addition, 3D projection mapping to the keep of Himeji castle that began in 2015 is very powerful. Please enjoy the production which is gorgeous and the magnificent scale feeling.
The festival has started just after the Second World War
The Himeji-jo Castle is a landmark in Himeji-shi, Hyogo with a nickname of “the Castle of White Heron”.
The “Himeji Castle Festival” held in May every year by the stage in such Himeji-jo Castle has started in 1948 just after the Second World War.
It is a cheerful event which contend for the first place in Himeji.
In order to show spirit that the new town of Himeji
In the war, although the Himeji Castle was not burned down, but the town in Himeji has been almost in ruins.
The Himeji Castle Festival was born in order to show spirit that the new town of Himeji will be made now.
The Big Parade is performed focusing on the Otemae-dori Street
Many unique events are performed in the Himeji castle festival.
What is unmissable in particular is the “Big Parade” performed on the second day.
The Big Parade is performed focusing on the Otemae-dori Street of the south in Himeji Castle which is the main street of Himeji City.
It is an event which participates easily freely
The time when the Himeji Castle Festival is performed is after the middle of May every year. It is, immediately after “Golden Week” (early-May holiday season in Japan) finishes.
It is carried out by avoiding the Golden Week period when other various events are performed, so it is an event which participates easily freely.
Enjoy the charm of town of Himeji and the beauty of Himeji Castle
The fun event such as parades, stage events and dances is jam-packed during 3 days.
If possible, you stay at least 3 days in Himeji and enjoy the charm of town of Himeji and the beauty of Himeji Castle.
|Name:||Himeji Castle Festival|
|Address:||Honmachi 114 Himeji, Hyogo 670-0012 Japan|
|Access:||JR Sanyo-honsen Line “Himeji-eki Station” (15 minutes walk)|