Kiriko Festivals in Noto





Shiotsu Bonfire Lovers’ Festival

Floating candles on lotus leaves resembling the Milky Way A beautiful, fantastical festival

Romantic story set on the sea

This festival takes place in the Shiotsu area of Nakajima Town, which is on Nanao West Bay. It is based on the romantic story of a male mountain god (Himen god) and a female sea god (God of Karashima) having a rendezvous over the sea once a year.
In the evening, after completion of a ritual performance in the shrines, boats loaded with a portable shrine and kiriko set sail from Kasashiho (mouth of Shiotsu River) and the Karashima pier. Floating candles on lotus leaves show the way on the sea.
The boats advance, guided by the candle lights, and the two gods meet at a bonfire built in the sea. They turn around the bonfire three times and enjoy being together for a while. Fireworks sparkle in the evening sky and in the sea, as if celebrating the meeting of the gods, and onlookers are led into a romantic world. Then the two gods move to Shiotsu Beach and a ritual performance takes place in the square. They swear that they will meet again the following year, and return to their shrines.

A story told by means of various types of light

People’s lives are deeply connected to nature of Noto. This festival is an opportunity for the gods who guard people’s lives to meet their lovers. When the gods are enjoying each other’s company, people pray for a bountiful harvest and for the safety of family members.
The festival is based on a love story in which male and female gods meet on the sea with kiriko lanterns and sail together. This festival is very different from the other kiriko festivals of Noto. The lovers’ passion is embodied in the lights of kiriko lanterns, candles floating on the sea, bonfires and fireworks.

Highlights of the festival

●Rendezvous of male and female gods on the sea.
●Boats loaded with a portable shrine and kiriko lanterns set sail.
●Bonfires and floating candles create a fantastical world.

Day: 4th Saturday of July
Location: Shiotsu area of Nakajima Town, Nanao City
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Inquiries: Nanao City Tourism Promotion Section (Tel: 0767-53-8424)