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Held in July, Narita Gion Matsuri Festival has ornate floats pulled on the streets of Narita and to Narita-san temple. Pulling a float on the street
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Keisei Narita Station. Getting to Narita is cheaper via Keisei Railway.
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The biggest taiko drum festival in the Kanto region is held annually in April. Various taiko drum troupes perform for two full days on various outdoor stages in Narita, including the main stage in front of the Narita-san temple.
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Pulling the float, Narita Gion Matsuri
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Keisei Narita StationThe Narita City Hall can be seen with the green, temple-like roof.
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Tired from walking, Narita Gion Matsuri
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JR Narita Station
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Main road to Narita-san temple
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Preparing unagi eel, Narita, Chiba. Also see the video at YouTube.Slicing it in half lengthwise.
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Striping off the boney spine.
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Skewering the eel. Also see the video at YouTube.
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Museum of Aeronautical SciencesThe museum is right at the end of the runway of Narita International Airport.
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Old YS-11 prop plane.
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Inside the YS-11
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Narita Gion Matsuri
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Narita Gion Matsuri
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Museum's observation deck.
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Side entrance to Narita-san temple.
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Offering prayers at Narita Gion Matsuri
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Gathering at Narita-san temple
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Prayers at Narita-san
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Narita Gion Matsuri
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Main stage at Narita-san temple.
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Narita-san during Narita Gion Festival
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Main stage at Narita-san temple.On Saturday evening, the festival climaxes with a free show on the main stage. The best taiko troupes from Japan and overseas performed for 2 hours.
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Narita Gion Matsuri
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Drum troupe from S. Korea
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Taiko troupe from OkinawaThis group stole the show with a dragon dance, lion dogs, and eisa taiko drummers.
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Last group
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Mud Paddy. Main site of the Warabi Hadaka Matsuri held every Feb. 25.
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Mimusubi Shrine, Yotsukaido, Chiba. The small shrine that conducts the festival. (皇産霊神社)
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Baby Blessings at Warabi Hadaka Matsuri in Yotsukaido, Chiba. Infants are blessed in front of the shrine.
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Men Take Strands of Straw
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A Man and a Baby at Warabi Hadaka Matsuri in Yotsukaido, Chiba.
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Babies to Mud at Warabi Hadaka Matsuri in Yotsukaido, Chiba. The men carry babies to the mud paddy and use a straw strand to paint a dot on the baby. Sometimes they use a finger to do it.
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Sacred Water (and Mud). On the the left, the water feeding the paddy is enclosed by a sacred rope. This makes the water (and mud) sacred.
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All the baby-carrying men must be careful not to slip and fall in the mud. Warabi Hadaka Matsuri in Yotsukaido, Chiba.
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Mud Spotting, Warabi Hadaka Matsuri in Yotsukaido, Chiba. The men hold babies and use mud to paint a mud spot on the baby's face. It is to wish for happiness for the baby.
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Some babies wear beautiful kimono for the occasion.
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The festival is also nicknamed "Doronko Matsuri" which means Mud Festival.
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Mud Fight
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Keep in mind that this is in the middle of winter.
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Mud Fight. After clashing and crashing to the mud, they throw mud at each other.
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They are in the mud for only a few minutes. Then they go back up to the shrine nearby and warm up near a fire. They go back and forth between the shrine and mud paddy about 4 or 5 times.
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A Touch of Mud. One custom is to receive a touch of mud on your face.
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Mud for All Ages
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Mud Brings Happiness, at Warabi Hadaka Matsuri in Yotsukaido, Chiba.
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New Status Symbol at Warabi Hadaka Matsuri in Yotsukaido, Chiba.
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Mud on Your Face: Fashionable, at Warabi Hadaka Matsuri in Yotsukaido, Chiba.
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After warming up at the fire, they run back to the mud.
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Mud Fight Round 2
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Mud Slinging
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I can't see... That's what he said: "Mienai" The kids nearby were screaming with laughter.
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Warm Up
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The End(s)
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Yotsukaido Station is on the JR Sobu Line on the way to Narita Airport. Map: http://www.kanko.chuo.chiba.jp/c_event/5705/
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Narita-san Dai-hondo main worship hall. These people are waiting to see the taiko drum performance. 大本堂
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Narita-san priests
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Priests at Narita-san.
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Priests enter the temple at Narita-san.
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Narita-san Park has a Japanese garden, quite scenic in spring with cherry blossoms.
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Narita-san Park cherry blossoms. The park opened in 1928. 成田山公園
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Narita-san Park's Ukimido Floating Hall
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Narita-san Park's Ukimido Floating Hall
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Narita-san Park's Ukimido Floating Hall
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Cherry blossom grove
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Tower of Peace, Narita-san Heiwa no Daito, built in 1984. 平和の大塔
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Tower of Peace, Narita-san Heiwa no Daito 平和の大塔
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Komyodo Hall, Important Cultural Property at Narita-san. Built in 1701 and dedicated to the Dainichi Nyorai Buddha, the principal image of Shingon Buddhism. 光明堂
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Marker indicating that Emperor Meiji visited Narita-san.
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Main temple office
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