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Nagasaki Lantern Festival



An annual festival in Nagasaki held on Chinese new year The festival has been started to

celebrate a new year by Chinese who lived in Nagasaki, and it became the Nagasaki’s festival

since 1994. More than 10 thousand lanterns are decorated at China town during the festival.


Kokura Gion Daiko (小倉祇園太鼓)


Kokura Gion Daiko is a summer festivals in which the main attraction is the playing the drums.

In 1958 the event was designated as an intangible folk cultural asset of Fukuoka prefecture.
On July 1st the Kokura Gion Taiko Uchizome-shiki (the ceremony to 
inaugurate Taiko practice sessions) is held,and from that moment,Kokura’s exciting summer begins,with each town and company group striving to perfect its own Taiko performance ahead of the Festival which is held from Friday of the third weel

in July.

A prominent feature of the festival are the dashi (decorated cart) parades through the town,carrying two drums,one at the front of the cart and one at the rear,with four drummers beating the Taiko in time to gongs called jangara, and reciting the phrase Yassa Yare Yare. 

The highlights of the Festival which you should not miss are the Taiko Performing Contest held at Kokura Castle on July 16th; and the Taiko Performing Parade held at Komonji-dori street on Sunday of the third week in July.

Japanese Castle

Long ago Japan was divided into many small provinces. The lords of each province fought to take

each other’s territory. Castles were built by the lords to show off their power and control their provinces.

They were both residences and military bases. They were made of wood, but used various defensive

devices for protection. For example, moats were built around some castles.

Additionally, many castles were built on plateaus or hills. The slopes were then steepened, making

them difficult for enemies to climb. In some castles the grounds from the gate to main building were

designed like a maze to confuse enemies.

The main castle building is usually in the center and is called the Tensyukaku (Castle tower).

They are tall and magnificent structure. The loads and their immediate servants lived in the Tensyukaku.



Castles in Kyushu


Kokura Castle

The Castle located within a walking distance of JR Kokura Stations. 

Hosokawa Tadaoki commenced the construction of Kokura Castle

 in 1602 and spent 7 years to completed it. The castle had a five fold

and six layered Castle tower and it was built in the architectural style

called  “Kara-zukuri”. Then, it served as a residence of the Ogasawara clan.


Karatsu Castle

Karatsu Castle is called Dancing Crane Castle. The Castle, which

stands beside Karatsu Bay, is unusual in that the stonework rises directly 

out of the water, using the ocean as a natural moat. It resembles the

figure of a bird with its wings spread wide as there is a pine grove extending

left to right and because its donjon is thought to look like the head of a crane.


Shimabara Castle

Located in Shimabara-city and was built in 1625 by the feudal load

Matsukura Shigemasa, who was regarded as a master of castle

building. The castle, which took 7 years to complete, is also known as 

“Moritake Castle”. It was an almost rectangular flatland castle built in

the Renkaku-style.


Kumamoto Castle

The Castle is one of the three great castles and one of the 100 best places

in Japan to view cherry blossoms. Due to the Earthquakes in 2016, the

Castle have heavy damages and many of Castle buildings were destroyed.

After that the restoration activities are being performed as fast as possible.




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Nature in Kyushu

Kyushu has rich landscapes including nature and diverse cultures including food cultures.

And also, Kyushu is known as ‘Onsen island’ and there are many Onsen resorts to stop into

while you’re travelling around.



Hiraodai Karst Plateau & Caves in Kitakyushu 

One of the three largest Karst Plateau in Japan. It is located in south

eastern part of Kitakyushu-cityAt altitudes between 400 and 600

meters above sea level and stretching 6 km from north to south

and 2 km from east to west.  


Mount Sarakura in Kitakyushu

The height of the mountain is 622 meters from sea level. At the top

you are presented with a magnificent and spectacular view of

Kitakyushu. Three Major Night View of Japan from Mount Sarakura to

be experienced. The beautiful night view is created by combination

of industrial zones and rich nature areas.  


Sakurai Futamigaura in Itoshima

A beautiful sunset scenic spot at Genkai Sea in Itoshima, the place is

selected as Japan’s 100 scenic beauty sunset beach.  Located in Genkai

Quasi-National Park. The married rock is connected by the large

Shimenawa with 30 metre length and 1 ton weight. Male rock is 11.8

metre high and Female rock is 11.2 metre height.


Keya Cave cruise in Itoshima

The most largest basalt cave in Japan located consist of octagon and

hexagon columnar joints. The entrance of the cave is 64 metre high

and 10 metre width and the depth is 90 metre. It is designated as one

of three major Basalt caves in Japan.



Unzen is a gentle Onsen resort situated in the Unzen National Park.

 The Resort area was originally developed for foreigners as a place

close to Nagasaki-cityIt is started receiving foreign tourists around

the year 1900 when Kaempfer and Siebold introduced the city to

Europe and China.


Dolphins watching cruise

Approximately 300 wild Dolphins live in the sea between the Shimabara

Peninsula and Amakusa. The dolphin watching cruises have become

increasingly popular for all ages, especially because it is possible to see

the dolphins so close that you could almost touch them.


Mount Tsurumi

 Soaring 1375 metres into the sky, Mount Tsurumi is a breath taking

mountain overlooking Beppu that offers some decent hiking, rare flora

and outstanding vistas. Visitors can take a ropeway 800 metres up

and revel in being surrounded by acres of rolling greenery. 



One of the must visit tourist destination in Kyushu. The world’s

largest caldera and the active volcano give a lot of excitements. 

And numerous unforgettable experiences in the rural area

can be made including Onsen, variety of sports and local cuisines.


Takachiho Gorge

A narrow chasm cut through the rock by the Gokase River. 

 The nearly sheer cliffs lining the gorge are made of slow forming

volcanic basalt columns which resemble the scales of a dragon

 where the stone twisted and flowed as it formed.



Spectacle art collection of exposed Rocks created by raging wave.

 Hyuga is a bay cityfacing the Hyuga nada SeaThe whole area

along Cape Hyuga- misaki with its many exposed rocks is

designated as the Nippo-Kaigan Quasi-National Park. 


Sakura-jima Island

An active volcano with three peaks, Kita-dake, Naka-dake and still

active Minami-dake. Formerly an island, it became connected with

the Osumi Peninsula in 1914 when lava from its summit closed the 

channel between the two.




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Wasshoi Million Summer Festival


Wasshoi Million Summer Festival is one of the festivals representing Kyushu and  started in 1988

to commemorate the 25th anniversary of the formation of the city and has more than one and half

million spectators every year. 


The festival is held on Komonji dori Avenue in front of Kitakyushu City Government  Office on the
first Saturday and Sunday of August ( August 5 and 6 this year).

On the first day (Saturday)
,after the opening ceremony parade, festivals representing each of the
old cities assemble to join the parade and excitement grows among all the festival participants and spectators.

On the second day (Sunday), the Million Dance is performed around Kokura Castle by one and half million citizens who come from local companies and town groups,wearing themed festival costumes.
They dance and dance, enlivening and energising the festival.
One of the greatest highlights is the firework display,this spectacular show marks the finale of the festival.
・Venue : Komonji Avenue and Katsuyama Park Kokura kitaku

・Direction : A 15 min. walk from JR Kokura Station



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Hakata Dontaku Festival

Hakata Dontaku Festival, the name Dontaku is a corruption of the Dutch word 
Zontag, meaning Sunday.
The festival is said to have started as a New Year parade of merchants going 
to the local lord’s residence to celebrate. It is held on May 3 and 4 in Hakata,



About 30,000 of local townspeople take part, and its attractions include the 
traditional Matsuribayashi parade, a fancy-dress parade and a shamoji band.


Matsuribayashi is a parade of children and adults intraditional dress, led by the three 
gods Fuku-no-Kami, Ebisu and Daikoku, on horseback.
The kasahoko, a float that forms part of the Matsuribayashi parade.
It is believed in Fukuoka that babies carried under the kasahoko will grow up strong 
and healthy.
The shamoji band parade around the town beating time with the shamoji, the wooden 
spatulas used for serving rice.

Tamaseseri / wooden ball catching festival


Tamaseseri, a lively New Year’s Festival held on January, 
at Hakozaki Shrine in Fukuoka-city, including a traditional form of fortune-telling.

Several hundred men wearing lion cloths compete on piggy-back in 
two teams, the “sea” team and the “land” team team, for possession of 
a wooden ball.

If the sea team wins, a bountiful fishing catch is predicted for the year; 
if the land team wins a rich harvest is predicted. 


Hojoya is the festival held Hakozaki Shrine to celebration of all living creatures
It has a history of over 1000 years.


Hundred of doves and carp will be released on September 18 in reverence 
of all living things, a solemn mikoshi (shrine) procession take place 
on the 12th.

Most visitors are usually happy just to amble about, doing little more than 
munch on grilled food, gulp cold beer and amuse themselves with 
traditional sugar-cutting or goldfish catching games.


Join the cheerful crowd in colorful yukata and experience a rare, unhurried 
slice of old-time festivities in Fukuoka.




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Sumo is a Japanese traditional martial art, which is the match of two Sumo 
wrestlers in the round ring called Dohyo.
The winner is one who first makes his opponent step outside of the ring or 
into touching the ground with anything other than the sole of feet, 
there are 48 wining techniques.


Professional Sumo Tournament is held six times a year, 
in Tokyo, Nagoya, Osaka and Fukuoka-city.




Fukuoka Tournamentis held at Fukuoka Kokusai Center in November.



Nagasaki Kunchi

Nagasaki Kunchi is one of big-three festival in Japan, held on October 7 to 9 at Suwa Shrine.

The festival features Chinese dance including Ja-odori (Snake dance), this time dancing all

around the city but especially at Suwa Shrine. History of the Festival, after Christianity was

harshly suppressed in Nagasaki in 1624, a festival was dedicated to Suwa Shrine, the guardian

god of local people. It is believed that Suwa Shrine festival called “Nagasaki Kunchi” and danced

were offered to shrine with cooperated of local people in 1634.



At the outset, dedicated dance were very simple but gradually became colorful. During Eiho Era

(1673-80), a Chinese dance with an exotic flavor offered to the shrine. The Ja-odori or snake dance

was first performed in the Nagasaki Kunchi during period 1789-1800. In 1970, the government

designated the whole of Nagasaki Kunchi dance including Ja-odori as an Important Intangible

Cultural Asset.



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