La 12e édition du Festival du cinéma japonais contemporain Kinotayo approche à grand pas puisqu’elle se déroulera à Paris et dans le Val d’Oise du 2 au 20 novembre. Le festival ira ensuite en région (Cannes, Le Cannet, Marly, Saint-Malo, Strasbourg, Pa…

Uji City Walking Routes

Uji City is located in the southern part of Kyoto Prefecture and is well know for its rich cultural history and heritage. The city is home to two UNESCO World Heritage sites (Ujigami Shrine and Byodo-in Temple) and is blessed with the rich natural sur…

Bread Festival – La Fete du Pain Setagaya 2017 – in Tokyo

世田谷パン祭りMy partner and I attended the Setagaya Bread Festival (or, La Fete du Pain Setagaya) on Sunday. This two-day festival was the seventh to take place here, the first having been held in 2011.Setagaya Bread Festival 2017 “buns” logoWe first went to…

Anjo City Tanabata Festival


The Anjo City Tanabata Festival took place from August 4-6 in Anjo, Aichi Prefecture. Joel Hadley Jr was in attendance for what was the 64th time the festival has been held. He kindly sent us these great photos and video.

Anjo City Tanabata Festival, Aichi.

The Tanabata or Star Festival is usually associated with July 7 and has its origins in an early Chinese festival recounting the tale of two star deities (Vega and Altair) who were forbidden to meet except on this auspicious day. The Tanabata festival story first came to Japan during the Heian Period of Chinese cultural influx.

Anjo City Tanabata Festival, Aichi Prefecture.

Anjo vies with other large Tanabata festivals in Sendai, Shizuoka, Hiratsuka in Kanagawa Prefecture and Asagaya in Tokyo to be the biggest and best in Japan. The Anjo Star Festival claims the largest number of tanzaku (votive paper strips) and longest bamboo-lined street.

Events include a parade of school children, music events and Obon odori dance performances.

Anjo City Tanabata Festival.

Around a million people attend the festival over its 3 days and there are hundreds of food stalls, lit by lanterns at night, set up to cater to the milling crowds of yukata-clad spectators.

Sample such festival favorites as yakitori (grilled chicken), kakigori (shaved ice), yakisoba (fried Noodles) and takoyaki (octopus in a batter).

Anjo City Tanabata Festival, Aichi.

The festival takes place in the streets around JR Anjo Station. JR Anjo Station can be reached from Nagoya Station in less than 15 minutes.

Take the slowest Kodama shinkansen to Mikawa Anjo Station (10 minutes) and then change to a local Tokaido Line train for Toyohashi (2 minutes). The journey costs 2,720 yen. Alternatively take a JR Rapid service train from Nagoya Station bound for Toyohashi and get off at Anjo (470 yen; 25 minutes).

Anjo City Tanabata Festival, Aichi.

The Japan Rail Pass is valid on this journey.

Alternatively take a Meitetsu train from Nagoya Meitetsu Station to Minami-Anjo Station on the Nishio Line and walk about 5 minutes.

To find out more about the event visit the official website or their Facebook page

You can see more of Joel’s take on Japan on his YouTube channel.

Nebuta Festival 2017


The 2017 Aomori Nebuta matsuri in Aomori city in the far north of Japan runs this year from August 2 until August 7. The festival kicks of with a children’s parade on August 2 from 7.10pm-9pm.

Nebuta Festival

On the final day of the festival there is a day time procession with the festival concluding with a parade of boats in Aomori Bay. Seven floats are loaded on to boats followed by an impressive fireworks display from 7-9pm.

Nebuta Festival, Aomori, Tohoku

The nebuta floats are large wire frames (previously they were constructed from bamboo) covered with Japanese washi paper, which have been beautifully illustrated with a range of motifs from fierce samurai warriors to more contemporary manga and anime characters.

Nebuta Festival, Aomori, Japan


Prizes are awarded to the best floats and onlookers are encouraged to purchase or hire a haneto costume and join in the chayashi dances.

Nebuta Festival Official Site


Spectacles japonais au Festival d’Avignon 2017

Depuis plusieurs années The Garage International organise au festival d’Avignon des spectacles d’artistes japonais du milieu de la danse et de la musique avec des personnalités comme la chorégraphe Hanayagi Egiku et la musicienne Kawaguchi Etsuko.  Cette année encore, deux spectacles magnifiques sont présentés dans les murs de l’hôtel Mercure en plein centre de la ville. Mêlant art […]

Deux films japonais au palmarès d’Annecy

Le film « Lou et l’île aux sirènes » réalisé par Masaaki Yuasa a gagné le prix principal au Festival International du film d’animation d’Annecy. 2800 films ont été soumis au festival cette année, provenant de 85 pays. « Lou et l’ïle aux sirènes » (Yoake tsugeru Rû no uta) décrit l’amitié entre un garçon vivant dans un village […]