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This video, titled "Hachioji Festival Video Introduction" (八王子まつり紹介動画), was uploaded by "Hachioji Festival" (八王子まつり).

The video introduces the Hachioji Festival, a famous summer festival in Hachioji, Tokyo, featuring 19 floats with elaborate carvings and gorgeous decorations parading along the Koshu Kaido, as well as an introduction to the floats and other attractions during the event in Japan's Kanto Region. Be sure to check out the video to see what the Hachioji Festival is like!

Hachioji, located in western Tokyo, is the second largest city in the Tokyo Metropolis, with a population of approximately 580,000. The name of the city comes from the eight princes that are enshrined at Hachioji Temple, located at Hachioji Castle ('hachi' meaning 'eight,' and 'oji' meaning 'princes').
Hachioji was an important post town during the Edo Period (1603-1868 A.D.) and as such, the historic Koshu Kaido (a highway used by merchants during the Edo Period) can befound running through the town.

Hachioji is famous for its delicious Hachioji Ramen and the beautiful Mt. Takao, which is a popular destination for hiking enthusiasts from all over Japan and even abroad.

Image of the Hachioji Festival, Hachioji, Tokyo
Photo:Hachioji Festival, Hachioji, Tokyo

The Hachioji Festival is usually held around Koshu Kaido Road and on Nishihoshasen You Road (西放射線ユーロード). The main venue is the stretch from JR Hachioji Station Intersection to Oiwake Intersection (追分交差点) on the Koshu Kaido. Hachioji Station is located in the center of Hachioji, making it a convenient place to visit for sightseeing.

The Hachioji Festival is held annually around early August. The exact dates and times vary from year to year, so it's recommended that you check the official Hachioji Festival website or tourist information when you visit. The 2023 Hachioji Festival will be the first time in four years that the event will be held and the dates are Friday, August 4, Saturday, August 5, and Sunday, August 6.

It can be difficult to find a parking spot during the Hachioji Festival, so we recommend using public transportation.

The Hachioji Festival is a famous festival of Hachioji, Tokyo. Formerly known as the Hachioji Citizens' Festival, Hachioji Festival is famous as a traditional event that preserves the history of Hachioji and as one of the best dashi (float) festivals in Japan's Kanto Region.

The origins of the Hachioji Festival can be traced back to the Hachioji Citizens' Festival that began in 1961. At the time, the festival was held in Fujimori Park as a way for the citizens of Hachioji to cool off during the hot summer. Today, the festival is held on the Koshu Kaido, a historic highway, and has become a major summer event that attracts many people from both inside and outside of the city.

The dashi (float) festival, which has been held since the Edo Period (1603-1868), is especially popular among people from downtown Hachioji. The festival at Taga Shrine is called Kami no Matsuri (upper festival), and the festival at Hachiman-Hachioji Shrine is called Shimo no Matsuri (lower festival).

Image of a lion dance and ibayashi, Hachioji Festival
Photo:A lion dance and ibayashi, Hachioji Festival

In addition to the parade of gorgeous floats, the Hachioji Festival is characterized by a variety of events, including a folk song parade, lion dances, and ibayashi (a type of noh performance accompanied by hayashi), an ice sculpture exhibition, the Great Kanto Taiko Drumming Battle, and a children's ondo performance.
[Video] 5:55 - The Children's Ondo Performance
[Video] 7:06 - Min'yo Nagashi
[Video] 8:41 - A Lion Dance and Ibayashi

Miyamikoshi Togyo is a portable shrine procession that takes place during the festival in which a huge portable shrine called Sengan Mikoshi is carried throughout the city. The shrine weighs approximately 3 tons and its an exciting event to watch. During the evening there are also dance performances by geisha and maiko from Hachioji.
[Video] 6:22 - A Dance Performance by Geisha and Maiko
[Video] 8:03 - The 3-ton Mikoshi (Portable Shrine)

Image of Dashi no Buttsuke, Hachioji Festival
Photo:Dashi no Buttsuke, Hachioji Festival

Among the many highlights of the Hachioji Festival, one of the most popular is the Dashi no Buttsuke, a competition of beautiful floats.
Dashi (Japanese festival floats) are huge, decorated carts that are pulled or carried by hand during festivals.

The floats, which survived even the fires of wat, have been designated as Tangible Cultural Properties by the city of Hachioji and are a reminder of the history and traditions of the festival.

Dashi no Buttsuke, one of the most popular events during the festival, is a musical showdown between floats. Each float is from a different area, and when they pass by each other, they pull over to show their local pride through a musical duel. Each float plays their own hayashi (a type of Japanese festival music), but if they end up playing to the other's music, they lose the battle.

When the floats appear on the streets of Hachioji, they are illuminated to create a fantastic atmosphere. The 19 floats parading through the streets are a sight you don't want to miss!
The power of the floats and the traditional musical showdown between each of them is great for taking photos and videos to share on Instagram and other social networking sites.
[Video] 8:51 - The Parade Floats
[Video] 9:21 - A Musical Battle Between Floats

Image of the Yokoyama 3-chome float, Hachioji Festival
Photo:Yokoyama 3-chome float, Hachioji Festival

Here, we'll introduce the floats of 19 towns that participate in the Hachioji Festival.

●Motohongo's Float
This is a style of float built based on carts used before 1978.
[Video] 10:21 - Motohongo's Float

●Yagi's Float
This float features an eye-catching carving of a giant eagle and a karahafu, a unique type of architecture often seen in Japanese castles, temples, and shrines. It's designated as a Tangible Cultural Property by the city.
[Video] 10:55 - Yagi's Float

●Hiyoshi's Float
This is the first float of its kind in Hachioji. Note the male and female peacock carvings on the front karahafu. It's designated as a Tangible Cultural Property by the city.
[Video] 11:28 - Hiyoshimachi's float

●Oiwake's Float
A two-tiered float built in 1914. What makes this float unique is the carvings of dragons on the panels. It's designated as a Tangible Cultural Property by the city.
[Video] 13:08 - Oiwake-machi float

●Hachimankami's Float
This float was built in the Meiji Period (1868-1912). It's also called "Kurama no Dashi" (Float of Kurama) because it used to carry dolls of Kurama Tengu and Minamoto no Yoshitsune. It was extensively renovated in 1915, and has been designated as a Tangible Cultural Property by the city.
[Video] 13:40 - Hachimankami's Float

The video introduces the features and highlights of all the floats in an easy-to-understand manner, so please be sure to check it out.

[Video] 12:01 - Okadomachi's Float
[Video] 12:34 - Sennincho 1-chome's Float
[Video] 14:15 - Hiraoka's Float
[Video] 14:47 - Hachimancho 1, 2-chome's Float
[Video] 15:53 - Oyokocho's Float
[Video] 16:26 - Yokamachi 1, 2-chome's Float
[Video] 17:00 - Honmachi's Float
[Video] 17:34 - Kamiyokamachi's Float
[Video] 18:06 - Minamishincho's Float
[Video] 18:39 - Yokoyama 3-chome's Float
[Video] 19:12 - Nakacho's Float
[Video] 19:44 - Misaki's Float
[Video] 20:19 - Moto-Yokoyama's Float
[Video] 20:51 - Minamicho's Float

In 2017, a total of 19 floats from different town councils lined up to celebrate the city's 100th anniversary. The sight of the illuminated floats all lined up in a row was incredible!

Image of Hachioji Festival floats
Photo:Hachioji Festival floats
Image of the Sengan Mikoshi, Hachioji Festival
Photo:Sengan Mikoshi, Hachioji Festival

Sengan Mikoshi refers to a massive portable shrine. The name "Sengan Mikoshi" comes from the fact that the shrine is said to weighs as much as 1,000 kan (1 kan = 3.75 kg) or 3.75 tons.
※"Sen" means "one thousand" in Japanese.

The sight of everyone working together to carry the Sengan Mikoshi, said to be one of the heaviest portable shrines in Japan's Kanto region, along the historic Koshu Kaido, is a spectacle in itself.

The Sengan Mikoshi procession is held on the last day of the Hachioji Festival. Many portable shrines, led by the Sengan Mikoshi, parade through the streets of Hachioji. The mikoshi carriers wear matching costumes and shout loudly to liven up the festival.
The solemn appearance of the mikoshi, the vigorous bearers, and the crowds of spectators that fill the streets are overwhelming.

The Sengan Mikoshi is one of the largest and heaviest portable shrines in Japan, and many people work together to carry it. When you visit the Hachioji Festival, try to get a close look at it!
[Video] 7:44 - The Portable Shrine Procession

Image of taiko drums, Hachioji Festival
Photo:Taiko drums, Hachioji Festival

Two of the most popular and noteworthy events of the Hachioji Festival are the Great Kanto Taiko Drumming Battle and the Ice Sculpture Exhibition.

The Great Kanto Taiko Drumming Battle is an event in which taiko teams from Japan's Kanto region compete against one another. The teams compete to see who has the best taiko playing technique and performances. Visitors can enjoy listening to Japanese drum performances of various styles and genres.

The sound of the taiko drums echoes across the land, resembling the beating heart of the festival. The audience is intoxicated by the roaring sound of the taiko drums, the excitement of the festival, and the brilliant baton work of the drummers.

The Ice Sculpture Exhibition displays beautiful sculptures made of ice, and ice sculpting demonstrations are also popular. Visitors are sure to be captivated by the intricate techniques and fantastic creations of the ice sculptors, who skillfully carve the ice into a variety of shapes and designs.
The cool, sparkling ice sculptures are a work of art that can only be seen for a limited time during the hot summer months.

The Great Kanto Taiko Drumming Battle and the Ice Sculpture Exhibition have become popular elements that add to the charm of the Hachioji Festival. Visitors enjoy the festival even more as they lose themselves in the power and rhythm of the taiko drums and are captivated by the beauty of the ice sculptures.
[Video] 6:08 - Ice Sculpture Exhibition
[Video] 6:44 - Great Kanto Taiko Drumming Battle

Image of Min'yo Nagashi, Hachioji Festival
Photo:Min'yo Nagashi, Hachioji Festival

Min'yo Nagashi, which has been certified as a Guinness World Record, is one of the many attractions of the Hachioji Festival. During the event, some 4,000 dancers in yukata gather along the 1.8-km-long Koshu Kaido and dance in unison.

In August 2016, this annual event of the Hachioji Festival challenged the Guinness World Records for the largest number of people performing a bon dance.
In the intense heat, 2,013 people formed a line and danced without missing a beat, and the event was successfully certified as a Guinness World Record.

Approximately 230 stalls will be set up along the 2 km stretch of the Koshu Kaido from the north exit of Hachioji Station to Oiwake Intersection.
Please note that the main events will be held on August 4 (Fri.) and 5 (Sat.), and no stalls will be set up around Hachioji Station North Exit on August 6 (Sun.).
Stalls will be open from 12:00 pm to 9:00 pm.

Image of the Hachioji Fireworks Festival
Photo:Hachioji Fireworks Festival

Another popular summer event in Hachioji is the Hachioji Fireworks Festival. Every year, many spectators gather to enjoy the beautiful fireworks display that colors the summer night sky.

The 2023 Hachioji Fireworks Festival was held on Saturday, July 29. The launch site was ThreeBond Stadium Hachioji in Fujimori Park. Approximately 3,000 fireworks were launched during the event.
A rapid-fire, continuous launch method called "Starmine" was used. The highlight of the festival is the sheer number of fireworks and their variety.

[Event Dates] August 4 (Fri.), 5 (Sat.) and 6 (Sun.), 2023

[Event Information]
■Every day during the event Period

Image of ibayashi, Hachioji Festival
Photo:Ibayashi, Hachioji Festival

・Ibayashi performances
Schedule: (Fri.) 6:00 pm - 9:00 pm, (Sat. & Sun.) 12:00 pm - 9:00 pm
Location: Park Ichibangai Dori, Ekimae Ginza Dori, Asahicho (Sumitomo Mitsui Banking Corporation parking lot), opposite Textile Association (織物組合), Joy Gobangai Dori (ジョイ5番街通り), Soto Terrace (桑都テラス), opposite Mitsubishi UFJ Bank

Image of a stall at the Hachioji Festival
Photo:Hachioji Festival stall

・Night stalls
Schedule: 12:00 pm - 9:00 pm

・Ice Sculpture Exhibition
Schedule: 3:00 pm - 5:40 pm
Location: Nishihoshasen You Road

・Festival Eve Dance (Hachioji Geisha/Maiko)
Schedule: 6:30 pm - 7:00 pm
Location: Nakamachi Park, Nishihoshasen You Road

Image of the Children's Ondo Performance, Hachioji Festival
Photo:The Children's Ondo Performance, Hachioji Festival

・Children's Ondo Performance
Schedule: 4:30 pm - 5:30 pm
Location: South side of Yokamachi Intersection

Image of the Great Kanto Taiko Drumming Battle, Hachioji Festival
Photo:Great Kanto Taiko Drumming Battle, Hachioji Festival

・Great Kanto Taiko Drumming Battle
Schedule: 2:00 pm - 4:00 pm
Location: Koshu Kaido

Image of Min'yo Nagashi, Hachioji Festival
Photo:Min'yo Nagashi, Hachioji Festival

・Min'yo Nagashi
Schedule: 4:00 pm - 6:30 pm
Location: Koshu Kaido

・Kaohsiung, Taiwan Performance
Schedule: 3:30 pm - 3:50 pm, 6:00 pm - 6:20 pm
Location: South side of Yokamachi Intersection

Image of a festival float procession, Hachioji Festival
Photo:A festival float procession, Hachioji Festival

・Float and portable shrine parade
Schedule: 6:30 pm - 9:00 pm
Location: Koshu Kaido

・Lion Dance
Schedule: 4:00 pm - 6:00 pm
Location: Nishihoshasen You Road

・Kaohsiung, Taiwan Performance
Schedule: 3:30 pm - 3:50 pm, 6:00 pm - 6:20 pm
Location: South side of Yokamachi Intersection

Image of Taga Shrine's portable shrine 'Sengan Mikoshi', Hachioji Festival
Photo:Taga Shrine's portable shrine 'Sengan Mikoshi', Hachioji Festival

・Taga Shrine Sengan Mikoshi portable shrine parade
Schedule: 2:00 pm - 5:00 pm
Location: Koshu Kaido

・Hachiman Yakumo Shrine portable shrine parade
Schedule: 2:00 pm - 5:00 pm
Location: Koshu Kaido

・Upper ward area portable shrine parades
Schedule: 6:10 pm - 9:00 pm
Location: Koshu Kaido

Image of a festival float gathering, Hachioji Festival
Photo:Festival float gathering, Hachioji Festival

・Upper ward area festival float gathering
Schedule: 6:40 pm -
Location: Koshu Kaido

・Lower ward area festival float parades
Schedule: 5:00 pm - 8:00 pm
Location: Koshu Kaido

・Lower ward area festival float gathering
Schedule: 6:00 pm - 6:30 pm
Location: Koshu Kaido

There are a number of things to do in Hachioji besides the Hachioji Festival, and here we'll introduce a few.

Enjoy the View From Mt. Takao
Mt. Takao is a beautiful mountain located in Hachioji, Tokyo. The mountain features 7 hiking trails, all of which offer different views of the mountain and the surrounding area. The night view from Mt. Takao is also superb, and from the southeast side of the mountain you can enjoy a view of Sagami Bay and Enoshima.

Additionally, there is a cable car on the mountain as well, so less experienced hikers can enjoy the mountain without having to strain themselves. You can hike up or down and take the cable car for the other half of the trip, or if you don't feel like hiking at all, you can take it both ways.

Takao Beer Mount
Takao Beer Mount is a popular summer event in Hachioji that also takes place on Mt. Takao. The event features an all-you-can-eat and all-you-can-drink buffet. There are Japanese, Chinese, and Western dishes served at the buffet, as well as craft beer from four different breweries in Hachioji.

If you're planning on hiking up Mt. Takao and want to check out Takao Beer Mount as well, we recommend taking Trail 1, as most of the course is paved and it has rest areas as well.

Try the Famous Hachioji Ramen
Hachioji Ramen is a light, gentle, soy sauce-based ramen with chopped onions and fat floating in the soup. Although it's simple to make, it has been featured on many TV stations in Japan and is now a popular ramen from Hachioji, Tokyo. What makes Hachioji Ramen different from other ramen is the way the fat in the soup perfectly balances out the unique spiciness of the onions and enhances their flavor.
The most common toppings for Hachioji Ramen are chashu (char siu, braised pork), nori (dried seaweed), and menma (bamboo shoots).

There is an endless number of things to do in Hachioji besides the attractions listed above. You can enjoy Setsubun festivals in the spring or in the fall you can visit and view the beautiful autumn leaves. If you're looking for places to go in Tokyo, be sure to add Hachioji to your itinerary.

If you're visiting Hachioji from Tokyo, it's incredibly simple. From Tokyo Station it's a straight shot to Hachioji Station via train. Take the JR Chuo Line rapid train bound for Otsuki and get off at Hachioji Station (1 hr.).

The Hachioji Festival is the largest festival in Hachioji. It's a festival that both children and adults can enjoy, with floats, dancing, musical performances, ice sculptures, and more.
The Hachioji Festival is steeped in history and tradition, and in 2003 it was awarded the Grand Prize for Regional Traditional Performing Arts.
The Hachioji Festival is so lively that it will help you forget the summer heat! Be sure to make your way over this summer!

【TripAdvisor】Hachioji Festival

Written By
Last Updated : Aug. 3, 2023
泉沢 明里(Akari)
I'm a writer born and raised in Hokkaido who loves animals and nature.
Hachioji Festival 2023 – A Guide to the Summer Festival on August 4, 5, and 6 in Western Tokyo!
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