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Nagatoro Fire Festival

March 1 @ 10:00 - 17:00

Nagatoro Fire Festival

Nagatoro Fire Festival. The featured image is from the Chichibu Railway website. 

A truly awesome and invigorating festival, the fire festival is one of those only-in-Japan occasions that are a must see for the long term expat in Japan. It will also be of interest to passing tourists, who can appreciate the grandeur of the fire ritual without understanding Japanese.

Hodosan ropeway base station fire festival nearby

The festival is held annually on the first Sunday in March near the Mt Hodo base ropeway station at the foot of Mt Hodo. 1,000 participants march to the Nagatoro Fudo Temple that is near the ropeway station. At the temple Buddhist priests walk through the fires of a holy fire called a goma. The ritual is called “hiwatari” and this is a rare opportunity to see it up close. It heralds the start of spring and is a prayer for protection against misfortune.

At the moment, there is a plum blossom in the festival on Mt Hodo too:

Hodosan Plum Blossom Festival | NAGATORO


Nagatoro Fire festival access

The temple is about a 20 minute walk from Nagatoro station. At the station they have traditional shishimai performances for the occasion.

There is a car park beside the Hodosan ropeway base station. There is limited parking at the temple. Both are charged parking sites.

Official event information on the Chichibu Railway



March 1
10:00 - 17:00
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Nagatoro Fudo Temple
1753-1 Nagatoro,
Nagatoro-machi, Chichibu-gun, Saitama-ken 369-1305 Japan
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Events by their very nature are tentative. Please do check with the official sources for any last minute changes due to weather or other mitigating factors.