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Address: Tennogawa Park, Tsushima, Aichi
Tsushima International Association
The city of Tsushima has a population of 66,000. To the west flows one of Japan’s three big rivers, and to the east sits the major city of Nagoya, so the city is blessed with both fertile land and excellent transport links.
Tsushima has many festivals steeped in history and tradition, of which the most famous are the Tenno Festival, the Autumn Festival and the Wisteria Festival.
The Tenno Festival has been celebrated for at least 500 years, and is among the three major river festivals in Japan. Yoimatsuri (night festival) is held on the fourth Saturday of July and Asamatsuri (morning festival) is held on the following Sunday.
The highlight of the night festival is the gorgeous and graceful makiwara boats, which are decorated with 365 lanterns arranged in the shape of a mountain. The main pillar, which supports 12 lanterns, represents the moon and is raised high into the sky. The 5 makiwara boats move gracefully down the Tenno River to the music of Tsushima flutes.
The morning festival begins in the afterglow of the night festival. Six festival boats (the makiwara boats are joined by the Ichieguruma, a boat from Higashiho-cho, Aisai City) decorated with okimono (dolls of Noh characters), cruise while traditional music is played. Ten men holding nunohoko (halberds made of cloth) dive from the Ichieguruma, into the water one at a time. The Tenno Festival is designated as a folk-cultural asset of national importance as a precious religious folk event.
When; 26 July from 6PM, 27 July from 8:40AM
Where: Tennogawa Park, Tsushima.
By Train: Meitetsu Tsushima line, Tsushima station
JR/Kintetsu: Change at JR/Kintetsu Yatomi station to Meitetsu Tsushima line.
By Car: 15 minutes from Yatomi Interchange on route 155.
Information supplied by Tsushima International Association.
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