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What's your favorite summer festival in Japan?

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I like the fireworks near the Tamagawa River. After moving to Tokyo I only go to a very local festival for kids in my neighborhood. I tried a few larger events but they are miserably crowded, I don't know any of the people and the food either sells out or is bad. My experience has been the festivals in smaller cities are much more fun.

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Local ones when you walk to the event in a Yukata.

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Although not technically a summer festival, Kurayami Matsuri (Darkness Festival) in Fuchu is my favorite. The official festival is 4 days long, three of which have activities for people to enjoy, and it's during Golden Week, so it's not so unbearably hot and humid.

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Although probably unpopular, mine is Obon. It's similar to the All Soul's Day in Christianity. You can really get a sense of how the Japanese revere their elders, it says a lot about how they socially conduct themselves

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Tenjin Matsuri in Osaka, the festival boats floating in the Okawa River with the water reflecting the fireworks going of non-stop for an entire hour truly is something else

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Jibun no Matsuri.

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