Here are the main events happening in Matsue for July/August/September 2014. You can also find them in the last issue of Matsue City Guide Newsletter. Stay tuned with Matsue City Guide on Facebook for more events and info.
- Twilight Museum – トワイライトミュージアム
June 21 – September 15, at Shimane Art Museum
Located along the shore of Lake Shinji, Shimane Art Museum is open until 30min after the sunset. This event gives visitor a chance to enjoy beautiful illuminations in the dimmed museum lobby in the twilight.
More info in Japanese here.
- Tamatsukuri Onsen Summer Festival – 玉造温泉夏祭り
Illumination: July 15 – Sept. 30. Live: July 19 – Aug. 31
The hot spring area of Tamatsukuri Onsen will be illuminated with thousands of lanterns and candles, every night starting at 6:30pm. From July 19th to August 31, free concerts and traditional dances will be held from 8:15pm to 9:30pm.
Access: 25min walk south from Tamatsukuri Onsen Station. More info on about this event in Japanese: http://www.tama-onsen.jp/
- Musket and Katana Performances – 火縄銃と居合い切りEvery third Sunday, 11:00 and 14:00
Matsue Castle Rifle Troop (Matsue-jô Teppôtai 松江城鉄砲隊) performs rifle shooting at Matsue History Museum on a regular basis and this enthralling display is completely free of charge. You can watch it from inside Matsue History Museum, in Kiharu Cafe, while enjoying Matcha green tea and freshly made Wagashi Japanese confectionery.
Time : July 20 | August 17 | September 21
- Tenjin-san Summer Festival – 天神さん夏祭り
July 24 (Thurs.), from 17:00 – July 25 (Fri.), from 18:30
The festival continues the next day all around the shrine area, with drum processions that children participate in.
- Swim-Walking to Yomegashima– 歩いて渡る嫁ヵ島
August 9 (Sat.), 8:30 to 12:00 (Y500, booking needed)
Popular among children, this annual event attracts more than 200 participants who swim-walk to the sanctuary island of Yomegashima. Lake Shinji is only 160cm deep at the most in this area.
Please register by phone (0852-24-6521) or by e-mail (email@example.com). More info on http://mizu-miyako.com/
- Matsue Dandan Summer Dance– 松江だんだん夏踊り
August 9 (Sat.), 14:00 to 20:00
In the Izumo dialect, “dandan” means “thanks”!
- Matsue Suigosai (Fireworks) – 松江水郷祭・花火大会
August 9 and 10 (weekend)
One of the biggest fireworks of western Japan, Matsue Suigosai is held for two days over Lake Shinji. Many people wear yukata and enjoy thousands of fireworks between 20:00-20:30 on Saturday and 20:00-21:00 on Sunday. Dance events and other performances will be held on stage.
- Toro-nagashi Floating Lantern Ceremony – 灯篭流し
August 16 (Sat.), in the evening
This ceremony marks the end of Obon, when the spirits of ancestors are said to revisit the household altars, so this event symbolizes the ancestral spirits’ return to the world of the dead.
- Matsue Shinjiko Onsen Festival– お湯かけ地蔵まつり
August 24 (Sun.), 18:00 – 22:00. Fireworks from 20:00
Dedicated to Oyukake Jizo, the local hot spring deity of Matsue Shinjiko Onsen (northeast banks of Lake Shinji), this annual event consists of night illuminations, food stalls, free sake tasting and many other events. Fireworks start at 20:00.
More info on the Japanese website : http://www.matsue-yado.com/jizoufesta/
- Iya Shrine Festival (Hokake Matsuri) – 穂掛祭り・揖屋神社
August 28 (Thur.), from 19:00 (near Iya Station)
To pray for generous harvest and safety at sea, the god worshipped in Iya Shrine is paraded both on sea and on land. The land procession starts at 19:00. The celebrations include drums, mochi-maki (distribution of rice cakes) and fireworks. The crowd is also given sake in bamboo cups.
More pictures of this festival in our Facebook Album.
- Sada Shrine’s Gozakae Ritual– 御座替え神事・佐太神社
September 24 (Wed.) and 25 (Thur.), in the evening
This serious ritual is undertaken to purify the new rush mats upon which the tutelary deities of Sada Shrine (Important Cultural Property) are to sit. It consists of purification dances (first day) and celebration dances (second day) which include the famous UNESCO-registered Sada Shin Noh dances.