Otsu Matsuri Festival Tour

A very rare festival tour offered only one-day a year!

 Let us take you behind the scenes of the Otsu Festival, a nationally designated Intangible Folk Important Cultural Property that has been celebrated annually for 400 years.

 Why don't you join this one-day tour where you can see the town in a festive mood, listen to a special performance of musical accompaniment, and test pull with ropes a glittering Hikiyama wheeled float with the townspeople?


©Yasuyuki Tsutsumi
©Yasuyuki Tsutsumi


 In Japan, there are various festivals that have been passed down from generation to generation, and here in Otsu, too, there is an opulent Hikiyama festival that has been passed down by the townspeople for 400 years.

 In this tour, the local people will guide you through the festival's highlights and traditions. 

 You will listen to their explanation about the glittering floats with KARAKURI dolls, a unique characteristic of the Hikiyama Festival, as well as be treated to a special performance of the most exciting musical performance of the festival. 

 You will even have a chance to pull a big float with them!

 This is a hands-on tour where you can learn how the traditional culture of the Otsu Festival, is passed down from parent to child and the local community, as well as touch the stories of its successors while coming to appreciate the importance of continuing the tradition.

 By taking a peek behind the scenes of the historic and precious Otsu Festival, you will be able to see and touch the true nature of Japanese festivals and enjoy the high-energy together with the proud townspeople.


Important Information

Tour Date: 8 October 2022, Yomiya (Eve of the festival vigil) 

We will take a stroll through the town enjoying the festive mood and savor time interacting with the townspeople.

We will also visit a Machiya house, which is designated as a registered tangible cultural property, and learn about Machiya architecture through the guidance and stories of the owner.

The tour will end at 19:00pm at JR Otsu Station. Meals are not included, but there are restaurants in the area and we can introduce them to you if you wish. It takes only 10 minutes from Otsu Station to Kyoto Station by train.

Departure Point

Sanjo Keihan Station (Keihan-Line)

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Photo Gallery

Their daily practice scenes