JAPAN PHOTOS by Philbert Ono

*Be sure to wear a mask when traveling.


Most viewed - Nikko Toshogu Grand Spring Festival 東照宮春季大祭
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Posing with maybe with their school teacher.461 views
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Warriors coming down the Omotesando. 武者行列413 views
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Also called "Sennin Gyoretsu" (1,000-person Procession 千人行列), this is Nikko's largest festival held on May 17-18. The highlight is a long procession of over 1,000 people dressed in various costumes.366 viewsThe three portable shrines are dedicated to the spirits of Tokugawa Ieyasu, Toyotomi Hideyoshi, and Minamoto Yoritomo. Photos start with May 17 at Toshogu Shrine, when priests gathered for a ceremony. 発興祭
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The warriors are the procession's main attraction.361 viewsWaiting near Futarasan Shrine's torii.
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Chigo children wearing an elaborate crown with the signs of the eto Oriental Zodiac. Nikko331 viewsNikko Grand Spring Festival in May.
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Warriors on Omotesando283 views
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Face of a samurai.275 views
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Omotesando main promenade. Also see the video at YouTube. 表参道258 views
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Shrine priest252 views
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Warriors leaving the Otabisho.246 views
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Dance maidens245 views
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Warriors walk back up the slope in front of the Otabisho.227 views
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Coming down from Yomeimon Gate (National Treasure). 陽明門216 viewsThe gate is a National Treasure and symbol of Nikko.

陽明門
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Chigo children 稚児, Nikko216 views
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Shrine priests standing211 views
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Passing under the torii at Futarasan Shrine. 二荒山神社199 views二荒山神社
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Priests on a rainy day.196 views
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Shrine priest185 views
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Near departure time at Otabisho179 views
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Warriors and Five-story Pagoda177 views
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Shrine maidens 巫女163 views
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1:30 pm: The end (path to Futarasan Shrine). A similar festival is held in Oct., but on a smaller scale and with only one mikoshi.156 viewsAfter the festival ends, there's enough time to see the shrine.
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Ichino-torii153 views
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In front of the portable shrine storehouse for the three mikoshi. A ceremony is held to transfer the spirits from the main shrine to the portable shrines. 神輿舎にて宵成渡御151 viewsThis building is right next to the famous Yomei-mon Gate at the Toshogu Shrine.

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Passing under Yomeimon Gate.134 views
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Prayer ceremony by priests132 views
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This warrior procession is said to be a reenactment of Shogun Tokugawa Hidetada's visit to Toshogu Shrine, dedicated to Tokugawa Ieyasu. Successive shoguns visited the shrine as well.128 views上新道
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The three portable shrines (mikoshi) are then carried out of the storehouse to be taken to Futarasan Shrine.125 views
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Cool heads.123 views
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The spirits of Tokugawa Ieyasu, Toyotomi Hideyoshi, and Minamoto Yoritomo in the three portable shrines are then transferred to Futarasan Shrine. The mikoshi spend the night here.120 views
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Both men and boys wear the warrior costumes.115 views
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Warriors coming down the Omotesando. 武者行列114 views
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Futarasan Shrine's torii113 views
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A short path leads to Futarasan Shrine.111 views
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Second group of mikoshi bearers fall in line.111 views
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Portable shrine in Futarasan Shrine's Haiden Hall.111 views二荒山神社 拝殿
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Over 50 different costumes are featured in the procession.111 views
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The procession's starting point at Futarasan Shrine is a great photo op.108 views
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At 11:00 am, the procession starts. They leave Futarasan Shrine through this torii. 上新道108 views上新道
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The three portable shrines (mikoshi) in Futarasan Shrine's Haiden Hall. 二荒山神社 拝殿107 views
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Azuma-asobi no Mai Dance 東遊の舞107 views
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Warriors make their way through.106 views
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Rear view106 views
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Beware of horse droppings105 views
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What happened to the white roof for the musicians? Azuma-asobi no Mai Dance 東遊の舞105 viewsThese pictures were taken in different years and combined.
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Start of the Omotesando with Ichino-torii in the background. 一ノ鳥居104 views
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This short path goes to the Omotesando main promenade.104 views上新道
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May 18: At 10:35 am, the spirits are transferred from Futarasan Shrine back to the portable shrines.103 viewsFutarasan Shrine's Haiden Hall.

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Mikoshi bearers standing by.103 views
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Entering Futarasan Shrine's Haiden Hall. All three portable shrines are taken to this hall. 二荒山神社 拝殿102 views
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Mikoshi bearers standing by.102 views
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First group of mikoshi bearers fall in line.102 views
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Grounds of Futarasan Shrine, the starting point of the "1,000-Person Procession." 千人行列102 views
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Warriors with shiny gold helmets.102 views
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12 noon: Otabisho resting place. They arrive and have lunch. The three mikoshi are stored in the building on the upper left. 御旅所101 views御旅所
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Azuma-asobi no Mai Dance musicians101 views
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Another mikoshi going up to Omote-mon Gate101 views
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Omotesando main promenade 表参道100 views
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Passing under the torii at Futarasan Shrine. 二荒山神社99 views二荒山神社
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Shrine priests sitting97 views
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The Boy Scouts collect offerings (excluding horse droppings) thrown on the ground by spectators.97 views
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Azuma-asobi no Mai Dance 東遊の舞97 views
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Carrying out the mikoshi from Futarasan Shrine.96 views
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The procession includes about 18 horses.96 views
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Azuma-asobi no Mai Dance 東遊の舞96 views
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People get ready to leave and go back to Toshogu Shrine.96 views
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Those crowns are heavy.96 views
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Carrying out another mikoshi from Futarasan Shrine.95 views
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Mikoshi passing through Ichino-torii95 views
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This is near the end of the Omortesando and they turn left to go to the Otabisho resting place.95 views
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Omotesando is the main part of the route to watch the procession. It is the shrine's largest avenue.95 views
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Carrying out another mikoshi from Futarasan Shrine.94 views
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These two performed the Yaotome-no-Mai. They are leaving the building.94 views
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Chigo children, notice the Oriental zodiac animals on their crowns.94 views
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Sacred music musicians93 views
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Mikoshi93 views
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Dancers leaving the building93 views
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Chigo children and assistants make sure the crown doesn't fall off.93 views
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Carrying out another mikoshi from Futarasan Shrine.92 views
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Otabisho 御旅所91 views
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Wooden birds91 views
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Another lion (shi-shi)90 views
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Warriors going through the Omote-mon Gate.90 views
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Mikoshi coming through Ichino-torii90 views
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Ceremony to give offerings to the shrine deity. 三本立七五膳89 viewsSanbon-date Shichi-jugo zen

三本立七五膳
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Mikoshi coming through.89 views
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Ceremony to give offerings to the shrine deity. 三本立七五膳89 viewsSanbon-date Shichi-jugo zen

三本立七五膳
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Offerings of sea bream (tai)89 viewsSanbon-date Shichi-jugo zen

三本立七五膳
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Banners leading the procession.88 views
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Lion85 views
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Offering of ducks (dead)84 views
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Warriors on Omotesando84 views
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Mikoshi going up to Omote-mon Gate84 views
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Procession banners83 views
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Mikoshi stored in the Otabisho's Shinden Hall, a resting place for spirits in transit. 御旅所 御神殿83 views
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Ceremony at the Otabisho. 御旅所祭82 views
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82 viewsSanbon-date Shichi-jugo zen

三本立七五膳
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The three mikoshi are carried out of the Otabisho.82 views
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Mikoshi and Five-story Pagoda82 views
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Mikoshi enter the Ichino-torii82 views
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Ceremony at the Otabisho. 御旅所祭 拝殿81 views
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Ya-otome no Mai Sacred Dance 八乙女の舞80 views
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Mikoshi is carried out of the Otabisho.80 views
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Warriors on Omotesando79 views
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1:00 pm: Departure at Otabisho78 views
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Heading to Omotesando. They follow the same route back.78 views
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Mikoshi is carried out of the Otabisho.78 views
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Mikoshi and Five-story Pagoda77 views
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Leaving the Otabisho.77 views
 
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