The Ryujin Matsuri is a festival of dancing dragons, based on the local legend of ""Ryujin Saburo"".
After starting with the dragon's eye-opening ceremony of ""Ryujin Kaigenshiki"" at Shinrakuji temple where the mythology originates, sounds of firecrackers and taiko drums by ""Kokyo"" (Ryujin Taiko preservation association) echo through the mystical atmosphere of the Japanese cedar forest, and at last the dragon awakes from its eternal slumber uncoiling itself to dance.
The festival moves to the area in front of the station, and then to Ryujin-no mori Park for a collaboration with impressive taiko drums and fireworks, where the dragon's night dance brings the festival to a climax.
The star of the festival ""Kouga Saburo"" is 45m in length and 3.3m wide around its waist, making it among the biggest class of dragons in Japan. 50 men are needed for its maneuvering. Even ""Maihime"", the dragon carried by women is 30m, both very impressive in deed.
The festival is packed with other fun attractions such as dance of the child-dragon carried by children of the town, another dance known as Buyo-nagashi, a mountain lily exhibition, and a stamp rally.
From 1 pm is the Ryujin-Kaigenshiki, the dragon's eye-opening ceremony held at Shinrakuji temple. After the ceremony at the temple gate, the dragon enters the pond, and then climes the stairs spitting fire from its mouth. The eye-opening ceremony held at the mystical Shinrakuji temple surrounded by cedar trees aging over 1,000 years, is a must see.
From 7:30 pm, the Ryujin-no mai dance of the sacred dragon is held at Ryujin-no mori Park. 45m long Koga Saburo and 30m long Maihime dance in tranquility spitting fire amidst the sounds of Ryujin taiko drums, gongs and firecrackers going off. Fireworks are lit during the finale, and the dragons go back to their sleep.
During the "fureai" time, you get to carry the dragon and play the taiko drums used in the festival. Attending it will win you a souvenir (they are limited in number). Please do attend!
Shooting with the use of drones is dangerous, therefore it is forbidden.
You must take your own trash home with you.
There will be traffic restrictions surrounding the festival.
We recommend you taking public transportation/shuttle bus.
Access to Kitasaku County
Miyota Station (Shinano Tetsudo Line)
Shinrakuji temple, in front of the station, Ryujin-no mori Park
Shinrakuji temple: Oazashiono 142, Miyota-cho, Kitasaku County
Shinrakuji temple: 10 min by car from Miyota Station (there will be a shuttle bus from the station on the day of the festival)
Station front: area in front of Miyota Station
Ryujin-no mori Park: 5 min walk from Miyota Station