Lanterns hanging in the grounds of Yasukuni Shrine during the Mitama Matsuri
Saturday, Jul 13Tuesday, Jul 16
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One of Tokyo’s most popular summer festivals, Mitama Matsuri at Yasukuni Shrine has been held every year since 1947 and today attracts around 300,000 visitors. It is especially famous for the 30,000 lanterns hung in the grounds of the shrine, as well as the messages and paintings by celebrities from all different spheres. The usual stalls selling takoyaki and other festival fare aren’t to be seen at Mitama Matsuri and alcohol is not allowed to be consumed on the grounds. There are, however, and handful of areas selling refreshments and snacks.

Many young people go to Mitama Matsuri dressed in yukata, making for quite a sight among the lanterns
Lanterns surrounding the main shrine

The Mitama Matsuri starts from 6pm each night. Incidentally, you can have your own lantern lit up with the rest if you make an application to the shrine beforehand (¥12,000 for a large lantern; ¥3,000 for a small). Truly one of the capital’s best summer festivals!

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Saturday, Jul 13
Tuesday, Jul 16
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Yasukuni Shrine
Yasukuni Shrine, 3-1-1 Kudankita
Chiyoda, Tokyo 102-8246 Japan
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