Do you know “Tanbasasayama city”? It is located at 50km north west of Osaka. A small city with population of about 40,000. The city is famous for its black soy beans and Tanba Touji (Japanese sake masters). Many people come to buy black soy beans in October. Tanba district had long been supported the culture of Kyoto for more than 1,000 years. It delivers materials which is inevitable for development of culture in Kyoto.
Sasayama district had strongly influenced by Gion Festival in Kyoto. Wonderful autumn festival is preserved here and annually held in October. Kasuga shrine is a small shrine but has more than 400 years history. “Takibi-No” (No play held in the night with fire) festival is held here. Four portable shrines, nine “Hokoyama” (floats) and seven “Taiko Mikoshi” (portable shrine with drums) are pulled by people and display gorgeous atmosphere in the streets.
Two days of the festival in October is a chance to share Japanese culture for foreign visitors. There is a unique Japanese inn named “Hotel Nipponia” which is made by reform of old Japanese farm houses. People stay there with traditional Japanese atmosphere and take delicious Japanese food. It is best accommodation to enjoy autumn festival of Kasuga shrine.
It is recommended to go to Kasuga shrine in the morning to make prayers and see four golden Mikoshi” (portable shrine) lined in the front of main hall. In the afternoon, children appear to pull Mikoshi along the streets. Every family welcomes Mikoshi and enjoy seeing big floats which parades the town. 9 floats with different color and design are enjoyed.