A summer festival featuring enormous illuminated lantern floats is drawing many tourists in the northern Japanese city of Aomori.
The annual Aomori Nebuta Festival began on Tuesday. It’s one of Japan’s most popular summer festivals.
“Nebuta” refers to the giant floats that are decorated with the images of samurai warriors and mythical characters.
Fifteen floats started parading along a 3-kilometer route in the city after 7 PM. Each structure is about 5 meters tall and nearly 10 meters wide.
The floats are accompanied by dancers called “haneto”, who wear traditional summer kimonos. They jumped and shouted as drums and bamboo flutes were played.
Two of the floats were featured in a festival in Aomori in June. It was held to support the reconstruction of areas affected by the March 2011 earthquake and tsunami.
Spectators, including many foreign tourists, cheered as each float passed by.
An Australian woman, who is visiting Aomori for the first time, said it’s impressive to see how local people work together to put on the event every year.
The festival will run through Sunday and is expected to draw more than 2.7 million visitors.
Source and image: NHK