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Honen Matsuri

Honen Matsuri is a lively and colorful Japanese festival celebrating fertility and the spring harvest - don't miss out on this vibrant cultural experience!
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Category
Appreciation
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When it is?
March 15
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Country
Japan
Introduction

Get ready to celebrate Honen Matsuri on March 15, a lively and colorful festival that takes place in Japan. This unique celebration dates back to the 9th century and is dedicated to the Shinto god of agriculture, fertility, and prosperity. Each year, locals and tourists gather to witness traditional rituals, performances, and parades throughout the streets of Komaki City. From giant wooden phalluses to rice cakes being thrown into the crowd, this festival is full of interesting traditions that are sure to leave you with unforgettable memories. So mark your calendars for Honen Matsuri – a day filled with joy, culture, and good luck!

History of Honen Matsuri

Honen Matsuri Dates

Honen Matsuri Timeline

<div class='timeline-item'><div class='timeline-left'><div class='timeline-date-text'>7th Century</div></div><div class='timeline-center'></div><div class='timeline-right'><div class='timeline-text timeline-text-title'>Origination of Honen Matsuri</div><div class='timeline-text'>The tradition of Honen Matsuri is believed to have started sometime in the 7th century in Japan as a fertility festival.</div></div></div><div class='timeline-item'><div class='timeline-left'><div class='timeline-date-text'>12th Century</div></div><div class='timeline-center'></div><div class='timeline-right'><div class='timeline-text timeline-text-title'>Establishment of Tagata Shrine</div><div class='timeline-text'>The Tagata Shrine, known for its grand Honen Matsuri celebrations, was established in Komaki City, Aichi Prefecture during the 12th century.</div></div></div><div class='timeline-item'><div class='timeline-left'><div class='timeline-date-text'>15th Century</div></div><div class='timeline-center'></div><div class='timeline-right'><div class='timeline-text timeline-text-title'>Shrine Reconstruction</div><div class='timeline-text'>The reconstruction of Tagata Shrine took place under Owari Tsuyoshi, a regional daimyo - enhancing the reputation of the festival.</div></div></div><div class='timeline-item'><div class='timeline-left'><div class='timeline-date-text'>1945</div></div><div class='timeline-center'></div><div class='timeline-right'><div class='timeline-text timeline-text-title'>Post WWII Revival</div><div class='timeline-text'>Following the devastation of World War II, the Honen Matsuri was revived, symbolizing hope and rejuvenation.</div></div></div><div class='timeline-item'><div class='timeline-left'><div class='timeline-date-text'>1980s</div></div><div class='timeline-center'></div><div class='timeline-right'><div class='timeline-text timeline-text-title'>Global Recognition</div><div class='timeline-text'>By the 1980s, Honen Matsuri gained global recognition as one of Japan's unique festivals, attracting both local and international tourists.</div></div></div><div class='timeline-item'><div class='timeline-left'><div class='timeline-date-text'>Present</div></div><div class='timeline-center'></div><div class='timeline-right'><div class='timeline-text timeline-text-title'>Continued Celebration</div><div class='timeline-text'>Honen Matsuri continues to be an iconic festival in Japan to this day, promoting agricultural prosperity and fertility.</div></div></div>

How to Celebrate Honen Matsuri

<div id='' class='facts-item'><div id='' class='facts-header'><h3 id='' class='facts-number'>1</h3></div><div id='' class='facts-text-wrapper'><h3 id='' class='facts-title'>Attend the festival</h3><p id='' class='facts-text'>The best way to celebrate Honen Matsuri is by attending the festival itself! Immerse yourself in the vibrant atmosphere, try traditional food and drinks, and participate in the lively parade.</p></div></div><div id='' class='facts-item'><div id='' class='facts-header'><h3 id='' class='facts-number'>2</h3></div><div id='' class='facts-text-wrapper'><h3 id='' class='facts-title'>Wear traditional clothing</h3><p id='' class='facts-text'>Get into the spirit of Honen Matsuri by dressing up in traditional Japanese clothing. This can be a great way to show your appreciation for the culture and join in on the festivities.</p></div></div><div id='' class='facts-item'><div id='' class='facts-header'><h3 id='' class='facts-number'>3</h3></div><div id='' class='facts-text-wrapper'><h3 id='' class='facts-title'>Make and eat mochi</h3><p id='' class='facts-text'>Mochi, a sweet rice cake, is an important part of Honen Matsuri. Try your hand at making mochi yourself or enjoy some from a vendor at the festival. Either way, it's a delicious way to celebrate!</p></div></div><div id='' class='facts-item'><div id='' class='facts-header'><h3 id='' class='facts-number'>4</h3></div><div id='' class='facts-text-wrapper'><h3 id='' class='facts-title'>Participate in the fertility ritual</h3><p id='' class='facts-text'>Honen Matsuri is known for its unique fertility ritual, where participants carry a giant phallic-shaped object through the streets. If you're feeling brave, join in on this one-of-a-kind tradition!</p></div></div><div id='' class='facts-item'><div id='' class='facts-header'><h3 id='' class='facts-number'>5</h3></div><div id='' class='facts-text-wrapper'><h3 id='' class='facts-title'>Decorate your home with sakaki branches</h3><p id='' class='facts-text'>In Japan, sakaki branches are believed to have purifying properties and are often used to decorate homes during Honen Matsuri. Bring a piece of the festival into your own home by adding some sakaki branches to your decor.</p></div></div>

Why We Love Honen Matsuri

<div id='' class='whywelove-item'><div id='' class='whywelove-letter-cont'><div class='whywelove-letter'>A</div></div><div id='why-we-love-main-cont'><h3 id='' class='whywelove-title'>Celebrate the harvest season</h3><p id='' class='whywelove-text'>The Honen Matsuri festival is a celebration of the bountiful harvest and an opportunity to give thanks for the abundance of food. It's a reminder to be grateful for all that we have and to share our blessings with others.</p></div></div><div id='' class='whywelove-item'><div id='' class='whywelove-letter-cont'><div class='whywelove-letter'>B</div></div><div id='why-we-love-main-cont'><h3 id='' class='whywelove-title'>Experience Japanese culture and traditions</h3><p id='' class='whywelove-text'>Honen Matsuri is deeply rooted in Japanese history and has been celebrated for over 1400 years. Attending this festival allows you to immerse yourself in the rich cultural customs, including watching traditional performances and trying local cuisine.</p></div></div><div id='' class='whywelove-item'><div id='' class='whywelove-letter-cont'><div class='whywelove-letter'>C</div></div><div id='why-we-love-main-cont'><h3 id='' class='whywelove-title'>Witness unique rituals and ceremonies</h3><p id='' class='whywelove-text'>Honen Matsuri features various rituals and ceremonies that are only performed during this festival. One of the most iconic aspects is the Shinto priests throwing lucky rice into the crowd as a symbol of abundant growth and fertility - making it a truly unforgettable experience.</p></div></div>

5 Unforgettable Facts About Honen Matsuri

<div class='facts-item'><div class='facts-number-wrapper'><p class='facts-number'>1</p></div><div class='facts-core-content'><h3 class='facts-title'>A New Sacred Log is Used Every Year</h3><p class='facts-content'>An interesting fact about Honen Matsuri is that a new cypress log is chosen every year to be carved into the phallic symbol for the festival. It symbolizes cycle of life and rebirth.</p></div></div><div class='facts-item'><div class='facts-number-wrapper'><p class='facts-number'>2</p></div><div class='facts-core-content'><h3 class='facts-title'>The Procession Route is Over 2 Kilometers Long</h3><p class='facts-content'>The procession route during Honen Matsuri is over 2 kilometers long, stretching from Kumano-sha Shrine to Tagata Jinja Shrine, featuring various floats and traditional performances.</p></div></div><div class='facts-item'><div class='facts-number-wrapper'><p class='facts-number'>3</p></div><div class='facts-core-content'><h3 class='facts-title'>More Than 100,000 People Attend Each Year</h3><p class='facts-content'>Honen Matsuri attracts more than 100,000 attendees yearly, both locals and international tourists, evidencing its global popularity.</p></div></div><div class='facts-item'><div class='facts-number-wrapper'><p class='facts-number'>4</p></div><div class='facts-core-content'><h3 class='facts-title'>Honen Matsuri also Celebrates Age of Maturity</h3><p class='facts-content'>Men who turn 42 and women who turn 36 and 37 are considered to hit a critical age and attend the festival wearing traditional colourful clothing to ward off bad luck.</p></div></div><div class='facts-item'><div class='facts-number-wrapper'><p class='facts-number'>5</p></div><div class='facts-core-content'><h3 class='facts-title'>The Giant Phallus Carried in the Festival Weighs 400 Kilograms</h3><p class='facts-content'>The carved wooden phallus which is an iconic part of Honen Matsuri, is a massive piece that can weigh as much as 400 kilograms and is carried around on a portable Shinto shrine.</p></div></div>

Honen Matsuri FAQs

When is Honen Matsuri?

Honen Matsuri is celebrated on March 15 every year. In 2024 Honen Matsuri will occur on a Friday.

Honen Matsuri Dates

Year
Date
Day

2023

Mar 15

Wednesday

2024

Mar 15

Friday

2025

Mar 15

Saturday

2026

Mar 15

Sunday

2027

Mar 15

Monday

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