If you love fireworks than the Ebisu-ko Fireworks festival in Nagano City is the perfect event for you to go to. It is one of autumn’s biggest and most prestigious festivals with over 15,000 fireworks lighting up the sky for two hours. As one of the biggest autumn festivals in Japan, a lot of people come to see the show. Participating in the festival is something highly coveted by pyrotechnics because they get to use all sorts of colors and all sorts of techniques and around 430,000 spectators come to see their art. They try to go above and beyond with their fireworks so every year is a whole new and exciting show.
The event started in 1899 as a day festival, a celebration in the name of Ebisu, the god of luck and fishermen. A few merchants got together and arranged a fireworks festivals that lasted through the night as a way to get the god to notice them and bless them with good harvest and fortune (but also to attract people to the area). Word of the fireworks got out and a huge amount of people showed up to see the sky be lit in all sorts of colors. Because of the great many spectators, local business boomed. The festival gained popularity amongst the locals and grew steadily in grandeur, size and spectators.
The festival is held in Nagano City on the 23rd of November, so late in the year. It’s quite cold with a chance of snowfall. If you plan on visiting, bring warm clothes and get some sake or hot chocolate from one of the hundreds of vendors around to keep yourself heated. Try to get there early to get a good seat or reserve a seat beforehand because you do not want to miss anything of the Ebisu-ko Fireworks Festival!
If you want to be accompanied by a tour guide to see the the snow monkeys, the Zenko-ji Temple, and the fireworks festival (with a guaranteed seat), please take a look at our November 23rd Only: Ebisu-ko Fireworks Festival and Snow Monkey Tour!