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Japan is famous for its colourful and enriching events and festivals.  Wherever you may be visiting in Japan with its array of both local (matsuri) and national festivals, you are sure to be close to a celebration or marked occasion of some sort.

Enjoy chatting and sharing snacks with local children inside houses made of snow, as a candlelit world of igloos appears on a snowy country evening.

More than 100 full-sized kamakura (igloos) and countless miniature kamakura are made for this winter festival held every year in Yokote city in Akita on February 15th and 16th.

Inside the full-size kamakura, an altar is set up and sake and rice cakes are offered to the water gods to pray for plenty of clear water in the coming year. Children from the town camp out inside the full-size kamakura for the evening, inviting passers-by to join them for a cup of amazake (warm sweet rice wine) and rice cakes and sweets.

At the same time, numerous rows of tiny kamakura with candles inside stand in the grounds of the city’s primary schools. The candlelight shining out from inside the snow-white kamakura creates a romantic scene, producing a quiet, beautiful spectacle against the darkness.

If your visit doesn’t coincide with the days of the festival, you can still enjoy the atmosphere of the festival, as kamakura displays can be seen all year round at the Yokote Fureai-Center Kamakura House.

Dates

February 15th-16th

Dates and functions are subject to change without notice. Be sure to check the latest information in advance.
Address:

Akita,
Akita,
Japan