There is an old saying in Japan that festivals in Edo start at the bottom of the valley (shitaya meaning 'bottom of valley'). The Shitaya Shrine Festival is one of the earliest shrine processions heralding the coming of summer in Tokyo. Watching the procession is one thing, but it was the stalls that were set up along the lanes surrounding the shrine that I (and the other kids) looked forward to. All kinds of summer festival food and Japanese traditional games are held at the numerous stalls. The famed natsu matsuri (summer festival) is an experience a traveler to Japan should try!
Name in Japanese
下谷神社大祭—shitaya jinja taisai—Shitaya Shrine Festival
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