Summer is the season for fireworks, and we take our fireworks very seriously in Japan! Here you can enjoy some of the World’s best firework displays at an endless amount of firework festivals.
Some of our favorite fireworks festivals include the Sumida River Fireworks Festival, Takasaki Gunma’s Firework Festival, Shimizu Port Festival in Shizuoka, Yodogawa Osaka’s Firework Festival, and the Okazaki Castle Fireworks Festival. There are so many to choose from, but these festivals are some of the country’s most impressive firework displays.
Many firework displays have been canceled or sometimes postponed in 2020 and 2021 due to the pandemic. Please check in on the official websites for up-to-date accurate information about each of the fireworks festivals this year.
Sumida River Fireworks Festival (Asakusa, Tokyo)
Sumida River Fireworks Festival (known as Sumidagawa Fireworks Festival) is held each year on the last Saturday of July. It’s one of the largest fireworks festivals in the country, as one might expect in the capital city!
The fireworks are launched from two locations: one close to Sensoji Temple and the other near the Tokyo Skytree. Over 20,000 fireworks are launched at Sumida River Fireworks Festival – there’s plenty to see!
The Sumida River Fireworks Festival is believed to be the oldest fireworks festival on record. It began around 400 years ago in the Edo period. The year after a catastrophic famine in 1732, the shogun held the festival to provide comfort to the spirits of the deceased and to pray for a future without famines. Now it is a festival where some pyrotechnic companies debut new styles of fireworks, so it’s a thrilling display!
The Sumida River Fireworks Festival often draws large crowds to the area in summer. For the best seat and easy access to the festival be sure to check out our Village House apartments in Tokyo.
Takasaki Gunma Fireworks Festival (Takasaki, Gunma)
The fireworks festival of Takasaki, Gunma is the largest in Northern Kanto. Takasaki Fireworks Festival is held each year in late summer as part of the first night of Takasaki Matsuri.
Those who attend the festival in Takasaki, Gunma, can expect to see around 15,000 fireworks in a thrilling display. The exciting display lasts around 50 minutes.
The fireworks festival is held on the Karasugawa River close to Wadabashi Bridge. It takes about 15 minutes to walk there from JR Takasaki station.
For the list of Village House apartments in Gunma, check out our website here.
Shimizu Port Festival (Shimizu, Shizuoka)
Shimizu Minato Festival takes place each year in early August. Over three days, more than 600,000 people gather to enjoy people dancing the Minato Kappore So-Odori dance as well as various other dances, such as the Kappo Reggae, and Jiro-cho Odori. There are also various other events to enjoy over the festival.
The Shimizu Port Festival culminates on the third night with an enormous firework display. The firework display consists of around 10,000 stunning fireworks being rocketed into the sky. The main viewing spot for the display is at Hinode Pier, where they can be seen over the sea. Though it is 10,000 fireworks, with the reflection of the water it may look more like 20,000!
Shizuoka is the essence of summer with many fireworks festivals and beautiful beaches. There are many Village House apartments in Shizuoka that will let you enjoy the area!
Naniwa Yodogawa Osaka Fireworks Festival (Yodogawa, Osaka)
The Naniwa Yodogawa Fireworks Festival is held each year in Yodogawa, Osaka, on the first Saturday of August. The festival is held on the banks of the Yodo River, so anyone attending will be able to watch beautiful fireworks and the magical reflection of the fireworks in the river, as well as the view of Osaka’s skyline at night. If you are living in a Village House in Osaka, this is a must see event!
The fireworks festival in Yodogawa, Osaka has been running for over thirty years. It is a volunteer-run event. There are regular fireworks as well as underwater fireworks, so the display is truly thrilling! The event is free but you can purchase reserved seats so that you comfortably enjoy the show.
Okazaki Castle Fireworks Festival (Okazaki, Aichi)
Mikawa Hanabi are a type of Japanese fireworks that originated in the Mikawa area of Aichi Prefecture. As the home of this type of firework, the Okazaki Castle Fireworks Festival is an impressive display, using mostly locally-produced fireworks. The festival is a beautiful and heart-warming celebration of the culture of Okazaki.
The Fireworks Festival is held near the banks of the Otogawa River, by the Okazaki Castle. This Aichi festival is held on the first Saturday of August, and the firework show lasts an impressive two hours.
People often reserve their spots along the river bank up to a day in advance so make sure that you get there early to find a decent viewing spot!
There are often food stalls, music, and other entertainment at the fireworks festival near Okazaki Castle – so there’s plenty to keep you having fun all night long! If you are looking to enjoy living in Aichi prefecture, be sure to check out our Village House apartments!
These are just some of the best firework festivals in Japan. There are so many wonderful events to enjoy so please get out and make the most of them this summer! In case you get peckish at the festivals, please check out our guide to Japanese Festival Foods.
One of the best parts of these festivals is getting to celebrate Japan’s unique culture and being able to enjoy the festivities with a large group of people. We hope you have a wonderful summer!