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Best time to go to Japan

Setsubun 2024

A special ceremony to welcome spring by throwing soybeans

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Setsubun (literally "seasonal division") is a Japanese beans-throwing festival that is celebrated all across Japan on February 3, before the start of spring according to the Japanese lunar calendar. The tradition is to cast away demons and welcome spring.

It's mostly a household celebration. Parents wear the masks of demons, and kids in turn throw roasted soybeans at the "evil spirits" with a chant "Oni wa soto! Fuku wa uchi!" It means "Demons out! Luck in!"

Apart from the households, you can also witness Setsubun at temples and shrines of the country. One of the largest festivals takes place at Sensoji temple in Tokyo. The festivities attract 100,000 visitors who can partake in contests and be granted prizes. The festivities end up with an iconic bond fire.

More locations to experience Japanese beans-throwing holiday in the area of Tokyo include Zojoji Temple, Ikegami Honmonji Temple, Kawasaki Daishi in Kawasaki, Naritasan Shinshoji Temple in Narita, and Takahatasanmyooin Kongoji in Hino. Tens of thousands of attendees come to see the splendid celebration. Outside of Tokyo, Yasaka Shrine and Kitano-temmangū Shrine in Kyoto also promise stunning Setsubum celebrations.

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