On March 3rd Japan celebrates Hina Matsuri, also known as the Doll Festival or Girls’ Day. Elaborate sets of dolls representing the Imperial Court were traditionally set up in homes all over Japan (and sometime still are). From February 11 to April 18 there is an exhibition of hina dolls and decorations in Enzan, Koshu City.
The main venue for the event is Kanzo Yashiki, a beautiful old house and important cultural property near Enzan Station, where there is a magnificent display of antique doll sets from the Meiji and Showa Eras. The also have special hanging hina decorations and beautifully made fabric art on display. If you would like to to learn how to make hanging hina decorations, you can join a free workshop held every Saturday between 10 am and 12:00 throughout the duration of the festival (limited to 30 people.)
Any doll enthusiast will find this festival fascinating. You can also pick up some souvenirs at Kanzo Yashiki if you want. They sell local specialties like miso, sweet sake, and more. If you visit in April you can also enjoy the peach blossoms the area is famous for.
There are two other event sites. One is the treasure house at Erinji Temple, and the other is Miyakoen in nearby Katsunuma.
Kanzo Yashiki is right opposite the North exit of Enzan JR Station.
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I fell in love with Japan long before I came here in 2003 to teach English, and it has proved to be a lasting romance. I love the history, the traditional architecture, the food, the strange and sometimes ridiculous contrasts, and the beautiful countryside. I lived in Shiga prefecture for one year, and in Kyoto for nine years, and now I live in Machida in Tokyo. I've traveled a little in Japan, but not nearly as much as I'd like to. I like traveling by train, but my favorite way to travel is bicycle.