Every Summer Japan is home to numerous traditional festivals and activities. This Summer, I invite you to enjoy a once in a lifetime experience in Japan.
To help you do that, this article will focus on 6 spots to visit in Hyogo prefecture during the Summer.
1.Akashi-Kaikyo Bridge World
Akashi-Kaikyo bridge is a big bridge that connects Kobe city and Awaji island.
Akashi-Kaikyo Bridge World offers a unique tour where you can go up inside the bridge and experience the spectacular scale of the high tech architecture and craftsmanship. The guide is an actual leader from the construction project. How exciting is that!?
Take the elevator all the way up to the 98th floor of the building, you will face a panoramic view of the Summer blue sky and the ocean!!
There are no glass windows up there so you will really feel the sea breeze, how thrilling!
This tour is operated April-November (on a reservation basis only)
* To join the tour, please check their website below for further information on times and conditions.
|Address||Higashimaikocho, Tarumi-ku, Kobe City, Hyogo|
2.Umi Hotaru (Marine Ostracods) viewing
Marine Ostracods only live in calm ocean waters. This little creature glows blue when it is stimulated, and because of its shape it is also called “ gem of the ocean”.
They are not easy to spot though.
Thankfully, the Awaji island tourist association hosts a viewing of these rarely seen creatures. They catch and release them near the shore at dusk.
The marine Ostracods glow like a carpet of light in the ocean. Only guests staying at hotels associated with the Awaji tourist association are invited to this event. If you are planning to stay in Awaji island during this time, be sure to take it in.
|Event Period||Usually every Friday and Sunday from April to September|
|Address||Amanishi town, Awaji City, Hyogo|
*There are other locations as well
3.Summer events held in Kinosaki hotsprings
Kinosaki hot-spring is one of the most popular hot-spring towns in Japan.
It hosts various events throughout the Summer. For about a month, they have a fireworks show almost every weekday evening so guests can enjoy the “Summer in Japan” experience. Depending on the day, they host big festivals with lots of merchant stalls and a Bon dance event. On the last day of the Summer event month, they will float a paper lantern on the river. It is advisable to contact your hotel first to find out what events will be hosted during your stay in Kinosaki hot-spring town.
|Address||357-1 Kinosakichoyushima, Toyooka City, Hyogo|
In Yabu city, Hyogo, you can enjoy canyoning without boats or other equipment. At this spot you can jump in, swim and float down the canyon absorbing the natural surroundings with your whole body.
Not only you can enjoy the beautiful scenery while floating on the river, but you can watch the fish swimming to and fro, and play on the natural slides formed by the river.
The nice thing about this is you don’t have to be super fit to join this tour, and even little children can join.
*Before joining please refer to the official website below to find out the details regarding times and conditions
|Address||374 Oyachoyokoiki, Yabu City, Hyogo|
5.Grape picking and pear picking( Michino Eki Kobe fruits flower park)
You can experience harvesting grapes and pears from August into September at the Michinoeki Kobe fruits flower park. It’s nice that walk-ins are welcome here.
They call themselves as “garden resort in Kobe” and in addition to their orchards they also operate recreational facilities such as a ride park, farm, hot-spring, and pools.
On the property are restaurants, shops to buy local souvenirs, areas decorated beautifully with the seasonal flowers, and a cafe.
There are 100 different ways to have fun at this resort.
*To join the grape picking and pear picking, please refer to the official website below for details.
|Address||2150 Ozochokamiozo, Kita-ku, Kobe City, Hyogo|
6.Tamba Sasayama Dekansho festival
Tamba Sasayama Dekansho Matsuri is a festival which started from a folk song (Dekansho) which originated in Sasayama and was sung during Bon dancing which is a traditional Japanese dance from ancient times. The festival is held every year on the 15th and 16th of August.
The highlight of the festival is the singing of the Dekansho song, which has been proudly sung for more than 200 years. The locals have continuously added verses reflecting each era to the song. It now consists of more than 300 verses!
The traditional circle dance is open to everybody. You may join in the circle with the locals.
You will see the Dekansho dance on top of one of the biggest wooden Yagura(outdoor stage) in Japan, as well as grand fireworks lighting up the big evening sky.
|Address||31 Kitashinmachi, Sasayama City, Hyogo|
|Event Period||August 15th and 16th every year|