Held for two days on the 3rd Saturday and Sunday of October, the Kawagoe Festival is Koedo-Kawagoe ’s liveliest event of the year. Famed for its Kurazukuri (traditional architecture) zone, this city is one of the Kanto Region’s foremost sightseeing spots, and it attracts large numbers of visitors each year.
The Kawagoe Festival's strongest feature is the festival float event which reproduces the ’Edo Tenka Matsuri’ festival. Spectacular festival floats carrying exquisitely crafted dolls are pulled around the center of Koedo-Kawagoe’s landmark Kurazukuri (traditional architecture) Zone. Spectators will be overwhelmed by the sheer scale of the many festival floats as they pass by each other when meeting at an intersection.
The Kawagoe Festival’s biggest highlight: ‘Hikkawase’
As they face each other, the several festival floats compete with each other in a hayashi performance (a traditional Japanese orchestra comprised of flutes, drums, handbells and dancing), cheered on by the excited voices of festival-goers holding aloft paper lanterns.
The excitement reaches its climax with the evening ‘Hikkawase’.
The Kawagoe Festival has developed both by maintaining a history of over 360 years as an invaluable town festival that preserves the style and elegance of the Edo "Tenka Matsuri", as well as by adding its own unique Kawagoe features.
In 2005, the festival was designated as a National Important Intangible Folk Cultural Property under the title of ‘Kawagoe Hikawa Festival Float Event’