More than 3,000 lanterns are lit at Kasuga Taisha Shrine in Nara twice a year—on 3 February for Setsubun Mantoro (節分万燈籠) and again on 14/15 August for Chugen Mantoro (中元万灯籠). These ritual dates back over 800 years with many of the lanterns donated by citizens. Among the 2,000 stone garden lanterns is one that is thought to be the second oldest in Japan! The lanterns are candle-lit, creating a atmosphere that truly takes you back in time. The lanterns are lit in the early evening with the viewing allowed until 8:30pm when the shrine closes its gates.