Saitama Prefecture Budokan

Each year in May, the Saitama Martial Arts Hall, aka Saitama Budokan, and Sports Center host a Sports Fair with a Martial Arts Festival. The Saitama Prefectural Budokan is a stunning building worth seeing for its architecture alone. But on one day in May, you get to try dozens of different sports, including several martial arts experiences, for free. Also, if you try four different martial arts / sports you can get a free ticket for an afternoon session at the prefectural ice rink, which is right beside the Martial Arts Hall.

Saitama Prefecture Budokan / Martial Arts Hall

The Saitama Prefecture Budokan holds scores of tournaments each year. They have brilliant facilities for martial arts, including a sumo ring, archery range, tatami mat training rooms and a large hall for martial art tournaments. It is a seriously impressive building made of reinforced concrete with wooden interior and several glass walls.

Martial Arts Festival

Martial arts festival at Saitama Budokan

The 7th annual Martial Arts Festival is on Sunday May 12th 2024. You can try dozens of different sports including kyudo (Japanese archery), Judo, karate and sumo to name but four of the 12 martial arts experiences you can have on the day. You can also try other sports including basketball, tennis, rifle shooting, ice hockey and baseball, among others. And they will have free training guidance on the day. They will also have a planetarium show. In addition, there will be food stalls on site selling such food as yakisoba, dango and ice-cream.

Almost all of the activities on the day are free. With each activity you try, you get a stamp. If you collect four stamps you can get a free ticket into the Ice Arena in the afternoon. They suggest that you come in comfortable clothes that you can perform sports in. In addition to all the sports you can try, they will also have a demonstration of several martial arts between 10 am and 11.10 am.

Information

Event: Sports Fair 2024 Martial Arts Festival スポーツフェア2024・第7回武道祭

Date: Sunday May 12th 2024

Time: Opening ceremony at 9.20 am, , performances and experiences from 10 am

Cost: there is no admission fee and the martial arts and sports experiences are free!

Venue: Saitama Budokan, 4 Chome-1877 Hinode, Ageo, Saitama 362-0032. View on Google Maps.

Access

The Saitama Budokan is about a 30 minute walk from Ageo Station, but you can get any bus going to Ageo Undo Park and the budokan is about a five minute walk from the park. There are also buses that go directly to “Saitama Budokan” and “Saitama Suijo Koen” (even though the suijo koen is permanently closed!). If you are coming by car, there is plenty of free parking. Although, depending on the popularity of the festival, it may become quite congested.

Official website of the Budokan. They have the most detailed information for the festival on the Budokan’s Facebook page.

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