2 to 7 August 2019
In the city of Aomori in north-east Japan’s Tohoku region, three million people visit this night parade showcasing giant papier-mâché dolls, or nebuta, some measuring nine metres wide and five metres tall. Built over a year by locals, these illuminated nebuta depict mythical figures, local personalities and even TV characters from historical dramas.
Taiko drummers, cymbal players and hundreds of dancers accompany these structures, and you can join in the fun by renting a haneto (festival dancer) costume. The festival closes with a two-hour fireworks display best viewed from Aomori Bay Bridge or along the waterfront.