“Shinkoshikitaisai: 神幸式大祭” is going to be held at Dazaifu-Tenmangu Shrine.
In Dazaifu-Tenmangu, which is the head temple of the shrines that enshrine Sugawara-no-Michizane (菅原道真公) in the country, “Shinkoshiki-Taisai” is performed every year from 21 to 25 on September. This autumn festival has started in 1101 year. It is the festival to comfort the spirit of Sugawara-no-Michizane of the enshrined deity as well as to thank the state of peace and good harvest. This old festival inherits the tradition and has been designated as intangible folk cultural assets of Fukuoka prefecture.
I’m going to introduce the evening of the 25th of the festival last year which was a climax over five days of it.
On the last day of the festival
Arrived at Nishitetsu-Dazaifu-Station. As I wrote it before (summer festival at Dazaifu), there is a direct bus from Hakata Bus Terminal to this station until 4 pm and that is the easiest way to visit Dazaifu-Tenmangu from Fukuoka city. But we have to use other ways to get here because there is no more direct bus operating after 4 pm. I took Nishitetsu train this time. Please check the access information at the bottom of this page.
The road to the shrine is illuminated by light of the votive candle. Shops of famous product of Dazaifu open until late during the festival.
It is the main shrine of Dazaifu-Tenmangu.
Many people began to gather around the Shinji pond (心字池) when the time close to the 8 pm. The photo below is at Taiko-Bride (太鼓橋).
Sacred Flame of Sentomyo
When it comes to 8 pm, sacred flame started to light in the candles that were prepared around the pond. “Sentomyo” is the ritual to dedicate to Tenjin (Sugawara-no-Michizane).
Kagura-Mai starts with the traditional music.
Kagura-Mai (神楽舞) by Miko (巫女) began on the stage that has been prepared on the water (arched bridge peripheral). Kagura (神楽) is played for dedication to God in the ritual of the Japanese Shinto song and dance.
Kagura-Mai in the stage that has been illuminated by sacred flames of thousand votive candles were beautiful and fantastic atmosphere.
You can feel the atmosphere of the Kagura-Mai in the video.
Shinkoshi-Taisai & Dazaifu-Tenmangu Information
Event date & hours: September 21st to 25th. (Sentomyo & Kagura-Mai start from 8 pm on 25th. Pls check the timetable of the other events on their homepage.)
Address: 818-0117 福岡県太宰府市宰府4-7-1 / 4-7-1 Dazaifu, Dazaifu shi, Fukuoka 818-0117
Access: From Hakata station (JR博多駅): Use JR Kagoshima main line (JR鹿児島本線) to JR Futsukaichi station (JR二日市駅). Take Nishitetsu bus (or walk 1km, 12 min) to Nishitetsu Futsukaichi station (西鉄二日市駅). Then use Nishitetsu Dazaifu line (西鉄大宰府線) and get off at Nishitetsu Dazaifu station (西鉄大宰府駅).
From Nishitetsu Tenjin station (西鉄天神駅): Use Nishitetsu Omuta line (西鉄大牟田線) to Nishitetsu Futsukaichi station(西鉄二日市駅). Then change the train to Nishitetsu Dazaifu line (西鉄大宰府線) and get off at Nishitetsu Dazaifu station (西鉄大宰府駅).