Top 4 Things to Bring to a Matsuri

by Bokksu Team

If there’s one thing to know about summer in Japan, it’s that it can get really, really hot. With summer festival season right around the corner in Japan, it’s important that everyone stays safe and cool to best enjoy all the cultural traditions and festivities! Here are 4 things you shouldn't forget to bring with you when you go to a Japanese matsuri.

1. A Fan

Fans, or uchiwa, are highly necessary if you and warm weather just don’t get along. Luckily, fans are extraordinarily easy to find in Japan and are generally also sporting a cute design you can mix and match with any festival outfit you wear. If you only need a fan for utilitarian purposes, roam around just about any shopping area and you’ll find yourself being handed a free paper fan that will supply some of the strongest wind your way!

Japanese Uchiwa fan with fun patterns
Japanese fans for sale at festival

2. Water Bottle

We can’t say this enough: HYDRATION, HYDRATION, HYDRATION! While we support this advice year-round, we want to emphasize that especially during the hot summer months outside, festivities are best enjoyed while well hydrated. And if you aren’t a huge fan of filling your water bottle with just water, perhaps you’ll enjoy some cold brew tea more! As you know, here at Bokksu, we’re huge fans of tea. So of course, one of our favorite ways to enjoy warmer weather is with a nice cold cup of cold brew tea!

chilled bottles of ramune
a cold glass of mugicha, barley tea

3. Your Appetite

We ask the age old question: If you don’t eat until you are ready to burst at a matsuri, did you even really go? The only true way to experience all there is offered is to come early to the festivities with an empty stomach and hungry eyes. With all that we’ve told you about the scrumptious cuisine you can taste at a summer festival, can you really refuse eating all there is in sight at a matsuri with the smell of grilled corn, fresh dorayaki cakes, and fried squid in the air?

Mitarashi Dango for sale at a Japanese festival food stall
Skewered grilled octopus at a Japanese Festival

4. Your Friends!

Festivals are meant to be fun so of course you should bring the best people to walk around and eat with! Capture lifelong unforgettable memories and partake in spectacular traditions that have been celebrated for centuries. Play games of kingyo-sukui and eat tons of wata-ame with everyone and make your next matsuri a truly memorable time!

Friends at a Japanese Summer Festival
Japanese Festival game, Kingyo-sukui, goldfish scooping

Well, now you're ready to head out to your first Matsuri! You'll be cool, hydrated, ready to have a good time with food and friends. Want to learn more about Japanese festivals? Check out the Festivals tag on our blog!

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