Osaka has a rich traditional and cultural background dating back to some 1000 years. There has been a revolution and the cultural scene has witnessed many new developments. Osaka Festivals and Events have a very variety that is a blend of ancient and modern developments. Osaka Festivals and Events can be traced chronologically according to the Christian year. Food and games with visitors thronging stalls and enjoying games is a common feature of Osaka festivities.
The New Year's Holiday period (January 1to 3): There is a festive mood that starts from the last three days of December. Offices , Banks and other public agencies are closed down. People visit shrines to pray for better health and happiness in the New Year.
Toka Ebisu January 9 to 11: It is celebrated for Ebisu, who is the deity of Commerce. This is a three day festival celebrated by millions of visitors every year. They buy the three things i.e. Kiccho-zasa, a bamboo branch decked with models of tai, Koban, an old Japanes coin and Kome-dawara a straw rice bag, which is symbolic of a flourish trade and commerce in Osaka, Japan.
Setsubun Festival, around February 3: It is a traditional event held every year at Ishikiri Tsurugiya Shrine. This is marked by scattering of beans by lucky male and female from the upper storeys of the gate to the worshippers below.
Plum Blossoms early February to early March: it is a festival commonly known as Ume Matsuri. It is celebrated every year since its beginning in 1986. Kairakuen which is regarded as the best laid out garden in Japan is the venue of outdoor events during this festival. Koto (Japanese harp) recital, a Nodate Chai-kai (Tea Party), a folk song festival and a haiku competition is organized. The 300 odd plum trees blossoms in red and white and displays a wide range of about 100 species in this garden. It attracts a lot of tourists from all over Japan during this time of the year.
The Spring Sumo Tournament The second and the fourth Sunday of March : The traditional Sumo Wrestling of Japan is hosted at the Osaka Prefectural Gymnasium. It is a ver y popular sporting event which is attended by celebrities.
Cherry Blossom Viewing, early April: This festival is celebrated to mark the arrival of Spring. Osaka Castle Park, Expo'70 Commemorative Park and Satsukiyama Park are the main spots for this festive occasion. Visitors picnic outside admiring the beautiful cherry blossoms.
Golden Week: The period around April 29 to May 5 is called Golden Week. This is a period having consecutive holidays which is utilized by the local tourists to visit places. Due to rush there is a great demand for accommodation. Airfares also remain high during this Golden Week.
Tenjin Matsuri Festival, July 24 - 25 : This is one of Japans three most important festivals. The festival is inaugurated with the Fure-Daiko Drum core and the portable shrine is set sail from Tenmangu Shrine to the port Tenjin-bashi Bridge. The climax is marked with fireworks that brighten up the night sky and colors the water surface.
The Bon Festival, Around August 13 to 16: This is one of the traditional festivals during which many companies close their office. The travel lovers go on a short tour and the air carriers make a good business out of it. The hoteliers charge heavily during this short period.
Kishiwada Danjiri Festival, September 14 and 15: It's a festival during which a group of people with youthful spirits drag the Dangiri Floats across the city of Osaka watched by enthusiastic people.
Midosuji Parade: Held on the second Sunday of October, about 100 groups take part in the parade which is the biggest in Japan. The parade takes place along Midosuji Boulevard Street in the Osaka City.
Shitenno-ji Temple Wasso Festival: The festival reflects Japan's historical relationship with different Asian countries. On the 3rd of November people in their ethnic costumes walk in the city district and around the temples playing different folk music.