Bikuni Jinja Reitaisai Tengu no Hiwatari 美国神社例大祭 天狗の火渡り Hokkaido (July)
A tengu (long-nosed goblin) and mikoshi (shrine floats) bravely pass through flames in this hiwatari fire-walking ritual to expel impurities. It is held in the grounds of Bikuni Shrine on the nights of the 5th and 6th. In the darkness, the bright flames create an illusory mood and a challenge for participants. The origins of this ritual are not known, however, it is said to have continued for over 100 years. During the matsuri period, the deity is taken to the sea to pray for large fish hauls and safety at sea, and mikoshi, led by a mikoshi carried by women, are taken into the sea, where people purify their bodies.
Osawa- aza, Bikuni-cho-oaza, Shakotan-cho, Shakotan-gun, Hokkaido
From JR Otaru station, take the Hokkaido Chuo Bus, Shakotan line to Bikunicho Funama. Walk for approx. 10 min.
* Time required from New Chitose Airport: Approx. 3 hr. 30 min.
From Otaru interchange on the Sasson Expressway, take National Route 5, then change to National Route 229 at Yoichi-cho and drive for approx. 35 min.