Summer

Hozuki Market in Ichikawa 2019 – Get a Lantern Plant at Cozy Fair in Chiba

Kiki

Writer

Hozuki Market in Ichikawa is one of the most popular events of its kind in Kanto area. This festival/fair is going on for one weekend at the end of July every year. The grounds of a famous Tekonareijindo temple welcome this event. If you would like to see the mix of Buddhist and Shinto traditions along with Japanese pragmatism at one single event, Hozuki (Ground Cherry or Physalis) market would be the proper choice. In this article, I would like to introduce one of the most popular Hozuki markets around Tokyo – the Hozuki Market in Ichikawa, Chiba Prefecture.

What’s Hozuki?

Hozuki (Physalis) is a plant which fruits resemble paper lanterns featuring a bright orange color. There are several names for it in English like Japanese-lantern, bladder cherry, or winter cherry. Even though the fruits are eatable, usually it’s not as popular as food in Japan. Japanese people use it for healing wounds, mosquito bites, but the most recent trend is to get it as an ornamental plant.

The Origins of Hozuki Market

There are many Hozuki festivals or markets in Japan. A long time ago, around the Edo period, the first Hozuki market took place at Atago shrine in Tokyo. The legend says that once a samurai servant had a spiritual dream about the Atago Gangen god. He had enlightenment that if you eat the Physalis seeds on the day of virtue (24 June), it will reduce irritation. The next morning he found 1000 Physalis plants. People accepted this theory and started selling the seeds at the market. Basically, people believe that if you worship at the temple on the days of the Hozuki market, it is equivalent to performing acts of merit for 46,000 days. Even today, you can attend the Hozuki Market at Atago shrine every summer.

Currently, the major Hozuki market occurs in Tokyo, Asakusa area, in Senso-ji temple. You can attend the Hozuki Ichi in Asakusa every year on 10th of July. Nevertheless, the market in Ichikawa attracts a lot of people as well.

The combination of Shinto with Buddhism is very common in Japan, and the Hozuki markets started to spread from Shrines to temples all over Japan! Thus, nowadays you can see the market at the Tekonareijindo temple.

About Hozuki Market in Ichikawa

One of the most famous Hozuki festivals is in Ichikawa. It is held for two days on Saturday and Sunday in July and attracts many people who want to see the festival and get Hozuki. At the festival, you will notice a lot of pots with Hozuki and rows of stalls that sell Japanese festival food like Yakisoba noodles, boiled squid, Japanese sweets, and alcohol. Apart from the food and Hozuki, children can enjoy various traditional activities at the stalls such as a shooting game, goldfish scooping, or ring toss.
You will also see a variety of shows such as Japanese drum performance and Yosakoi dance. If you win in the lottery, the prize will be a dinner ticket and Hozuki pot!

See Beautiful Lanterns Floating at Night

During the fair, there is a Buddhist ceremony when people launch paper lanterns down the river in the evening. Its purpose is to hold a memorial service for the souls of ancestors. There are more than 1,000 paper lanterns floating which creates a mystical and cozy atmosphere near the temple at night.

Details and Access

Dates: July 20th, 21st, 2019 (estimated). Please double check the dates on the official website closer to July.

Place: Tekonareijindo temple

Address: 4 Chome-5-21 Mama, Ichikawa, Chiba Prefecture

Official websites (Japanese only): 

Tekonareijindo templehttp://www.tekona.info/ 

Ichikawa City Tourism Associationhttp://www.ichikawa-kankou.jp/entry-info.html?id=141335

Access:

You can access Tekonareijindo temple from Konodai station and Ichikawamama stations on Keisei or from Ichikawa station on JR Sobu line. It will not take you more than 10 minutes from the stations to get to the temple.

Closing Remarks

It is going to be an excellent experience to visit the Hozuki festival in Ichikawa. Surely, yo9u will have a great chance to see a local Japanese festival in the summer! The Hozuki plants are pretty, have a bright color, and you can feel the Japanese summer atmosphere when you see them in the temple! It’s also worth visiting to enjoy the Japanese snacks and seeing traditional dances and performances with Japanese drums! Make sure you don’t miss visiting this festival this the summer!

If you would like to explore Chiba prefecture and see this traditional festival with a friendly local guide, please check the banner below!

 Discover Chiba Prefecture!

Chiba Prefecture is a great place to visit and can boast plenty of tourist attractions. Besides, it is very close to Tokyo, and you can easily visit it within a day. However, would you like to see rural Japan? Chiba Prefecture gives you a unique opportunity to visit a land of hot springs and admire authentic traditional Japan. The following article assembled the best festivals and activities to enjoy in Chiba Prefecture, which will make your trip to Japan even more rewarding!

URL: https://festivalgo.huber-japan.com/events/events/best-festivals-things-chiba-prefecture

More Lantern Festivals

I hope you enjoyed reading this article and it made you want to visit this great festival. Lantern festivals in Japan are very popular, and you can see it in any season. If you would like to know more about other lantern festivals in Japan, enjoy its mystical atmosphere, and admire a glowing night in Japan, please click on the link below and you will find an article on the best 13 lantern festivals in Japan!

URL: https://festivalgo.huber-japan.com/events/5021/

An Ultimate Idea Source for Your Tokyo Stay!

Most of the travelers who come to Japan enter the country through Tokyo. Even if it is not the main place of your destination, it would be a great idea to stay in the capital city for a few days. The biggest conglomerate in the world has much to offer to any kind of traveler. Whether you want to go sightseeing, shopping, eating out, or trying something special that you can experience only in Japan, Tokyo has it all. In the following article, you will find 100 things and many ideas on how to spend your time in Tokyo! Please, have a look, URL: https://festivalgo.huber-japan.com/events/7726/ 

Would You Like to Know How to Enjoy a Japanese Festival Even More?

A lot of people when they get to a Matsuri for the first time feel themselves a bit lost. They confuse about what is happening around. If you are new to Japanese Festivals or want to know an alternative way of how you can enjoy these events, the following article will provide you with a set of helpful tips on how to choose a proper festival and activities you should try there. Please don`t hesitate to take a look at it!

URL: https://festivalgo.huber-japan.com/events/5363/

Kiki

Travel, hotel and fashion writer living in Germany who loves to hang out with foreigners talking about Japan!!

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