Nachi Biei Hi Matsuri 那智・美瑛火祭 Hokkaido (July)
In the Nachi Biei Hi Matsuri, participants carry 12 burning torches weighing around 40 kg through the town at night, and then parade with 12 more inside the shrine grounds. The matsuri began in 1989. It is a successor of the Nachi no Hi Matsuri of Kumano Nachi Taisha in Wakayama Prefecture, an event which has a history of over 1,000 years. In the ritual, fire and water are worshipped, and thanks is given for the blessings of nature. People pray for the prosperity of Biei Town, and the tranquility of the volcano Mt. Tokachi, along with other prayers which are written on the torches.
Biei-cho, Kamikawa-gun, Hokkaido
Approx. 30 min. from JR Asahikawa station to JR Biei station.
Approx. 40 min. from Asahikawa Takasu interchange on the Hokkaido Expressway.
Approx. 15 min. by taxi from Asahikawa Airport.