Hakata Gion Yamakasa (Hakata Gion Floats)

One of Hataka’s 3 main festivals, Hakata Gion Yamakasa started on July 1st. Every year, you can enjoy colorful, decorative floats called Kazariyama.
Although smaller, you can see a Kazariyama at Fukuoka Airport (International Wing), too. This photo below is a Kazariyama set up in Fukuoka City. A masterpiece, isn’t it? The dolls are the work of Hakata Ningyoshi (Doll Makers). The sheer power is sure to impress you.


There are many events during Yamakasa. Please read on.


The climax is Oiyama (Chase), which takes place on early morning on July 15th. At 4:59 a.m., the first Yamakasa (racing floats, not the decorative ones) starts the race out of Kushida Shrine followed by 7 more Yamakasa floats. If you are in a mood for watching a powerful race full of men carrying those huge floats, this is it.

You can get to Kushida Shrine in Subway, which takes only one-minute from Tenjin Station to Nakasu Kawabata Station. On the morning of Oiyama, they run early trains. Only 200-yen roundtrip from Tenjin.