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Bamboo Lanterns Light Up Kyushu


Experience Kyushuu’s Bamboo Lantern Festivals

Throughout Oita Prefecture, there are various bamboo lantern festivals. These festivals were started, in part, to help maintain the surrounding bamboo forests. Today Oita Prefecture is the largest producer of madake bamboo in Japan! All of the bamboo lanterns are handmade and locally sourced!

Thousands of handmade bamboo lanterns artfully light the way in Oita.

Usuki Takeyoi Bamboo Lantern Festival

Usuki-Takeyoi (うすき竹宵) festival is held in November. This festival focuses on allowing the soul of Princess Hannyahime (般若姫) to visit her parents Manano-chojya (真名野長者) once a year. Preparation for this festival begins in August when the residents of the town begin to cut down the bamboo to be used to make the artful lanterns. Creating the lanterns is truly a community effort, school children, companies, and area clubs all come together to make the event a success year after year.

Each lantern is handmade from locally sourced bamboo. Photo credit: http://blog.oitatravel.com/

Each lantern is handmade from locally sourced bamboo.
Photo credit: http://blog.oitatravel.com/

Information

  • Date: November 5 – 6, 2016
  • Time: Nightfall
  • Place: Usuki City, Oita Prefecture, Japan

Click here for more information.

Light of a Thousand Years

Sen’nen-Akari 千年あかり, meaning  “Light of a Thousand Years,” takes place every autumn in Hita City. The people of Hita hope to “Light up our great past and wishful future for 1000 years!”  This festival boasts over 30,000 bamboo lanterns.

The people of Hita give thanks for the forest for providing many wonderful resources. Photo credit: welcomekyushu.com

The people of Hita give thanks for the forest for providing many wonderful resources.
Photo credit: welcomekyushu.com

The festivities primarily take place along the riverside of the Kagetsu River running through the town of Mameda. Musical performances and other events are held throughout the duration of the festival.

Hand painted lanterns float on a river in Hita. Photo credit: welcomekyushu.com

Hand painted lanterns float on a river in Hita.
Photo credit: welcomekyushu.com

Information

  • Date: Second weekend of November
  • Time: Sunset
  • Place: Mameda-machi, Oita, Japan

Click here for more information. (Japanese only).

Bamboo Lanterns Light up Takata

Lanterns light the path leading to the temple during this festival. Photo credit: http://tanqueray55.blog29.fc2.com/

Lanterns light the path leading to the temple during this festival.
Photo credit: http://tanqueray55.blog29.fc2.com/

In the city of Taketa, Oita Prefecture, a Bamboo Lantern Festival is held every 3rd Friday in November. During Taketa Take-tourou Chikuraku (たけた竹灯籠竹楽), the town is lit up by the soft glow of thousands of handcarved, bamboo lanterns.

Each lantern is meticulously handcarved by local hands. Photo credit: http://tanqueray55.blog29.fc2.com/

Each lantern is meticulously handcarved by local hands.
Photo credit: http://tanqueray55.blog29.fc2.com/

The festival lasts for three nights. Approximately 20,000 lanterns are used during this festival.

Information

  • Date: 3rd Friday in November lasting 3 nights
  • Time: 16:30 start
  • Place: Taketa City, Oita Prefecuture

Click here for more information.

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