top of page

Things To Do In Nara - May Events

From April 29 to May 5 is the ‘Golden Week’ in Japan and traveling can be quite a trip! However, on the local scene, there are some nice things to do in Nara this Golden Week. Roses are in bloom at Ryosen-ji and Ofusa Kannon temples. Within Nara City, there are three delightful gardens to enjoy; and for getting further out, we recommend Mount Katsuragi and Yamazoe Village. Also, don’t miss the numerous music events scattered around Nara for the ‘Nara for Culture’ program.


Things to do in Nara May, Nara May events, Nara may, Nara top tourist attractions, Things to do and see in Nara Japan, things to do around Nara Japan, things to do at Nara park, things to do in Nara for the first time, things to do in Nara in 1 day, things to do in Nara Japan guide, where is Nara Japan, Nara city in Japan, Nara backpackers, Nara hotels, how long to spend in Nara, Nara in Japan, Nara  location, Nara Nara Japan, Nara map, best hotels in Nara, Nara Japan attractions, Nara Japan things to do, things to do in Nara winter, things to do in Nara with kids, things to do Nara Japan, top 10 tourist attractions in Nara Japan, top attractions in Nara Japan, top best things to see in Nara Japan, top ten things to do in Nara Japan, top things to see in Nara Japan, top tourist attractions in Nara Japan, tourism Nara Japan, tourist attractions in Nara Japan, travel to Nara Japan, unique things to do in Nara Japan, Nara tourism office, Nara city tourism, Nara Japan travel info, Nara Japan tourism, Nara Japan travel


Children’s Day Man'yo Gardens Gagaku Festival

Children's Day on May 5 (05/05) is the most popular holiday event during the Golden Week period. On this day, the Man'yo Botanical Gardens, not far from the Kasuga-taisha Shrine, hosts the annual Gagaku Festival. On the garden lake's iconic and picturesque platform, there will be displays of ancient court music, dancing, and poetry. The show is included in the entry fee and you can also enjoy wisteria and azalea which usually bloom at this time.




Time: 13:00

Fee: 500 yen adults / 200 yen children

Location: Kasuga-taisha Shrine greater precinct



Nara Rose Gardens at Ryosen-ji and Ofusa Kannon Temples

Ryosen-ji (or Reizan-ji) Temple is probably the most famous rose garden near Nara City. The temple is a short bus ride from the local Kintetsu-Tomio Station on the No.50 bus bound for Wakakusadai. Entrance is 500 yen and with the rose garden, it’s 600 yen. The temple also has a small hot spring bath as well as a cafe-restaurant.


Things to do in Nara May, Nara May events, Nara may, Ryosen-ji, rose garden,Nara top tourist attractions, Things to do and see in Nara Japan, things to do around Nara Japan, things to do at Nara park, things to do in Nara for the first time, things to do in Nara in 1 day, things to do in Nara Japan guide, where is Nara Japan, Nara city in Japan, Nara backpackers, Nara hotels, how long to spend in Nara, Nara in Japan, Nara  location, Nara Nara Japan, Nara map, best hotels in Nara, Nara Japan attractions, Nara Japan things to do, things to do in Nara winter, things to do in Nara with kids, things to do Nara Japan, top 10 tourist attractions in Nara Japan, top attractions in Nara Japan, top best things to see in Nara Japan, top ten things to do in Nara Japan, top things to see in Nara Japan, top tourist attractions in Nara Japan, tourism Nara Japan, tourist attractions in Nara Japan, travel to Nara Japan, unique things to do in Nara Japan, Nara tourism office, Nara city tourism, Nara Japan travel info, Nara Japan tourism, Nara Japan travel



Ofusa Kannon is another temple loved not only for its many roses, but also its traditional tea rooms. It’s a 15-minute-walk from JR Unebi station and the entrance fee is 300 yen. Ofusa Kannon's official name is actually "The Special Head Temple Kannon of Koya-san Shingon Sect of Buddhism". Something of a mouthful.


People often visit the temple to pray for longevity and protection from disease as well as to enjoy the rose festival in June and the wind chime festival in July.


Visitors can view approximately 2,300 varieties grown in the temple grounds.



Roses at Matsuo-dera Temple and Umami Hills Park

Another place worth mentioning for its roses and scenic views is Yamato Matsuo-dera Temple on the eastern hillside area of Koriyama.  It has a small rose garden and great views across the Yamato Basin. However, even if you take the bus it's still a 2 km walk to the temple. The hiking trails (Japanese map) leading off from near the temple will keep you going and for the more adventurous, you can hike from Matsuo-dera to Yata-dera temples.


Alternatively, if you want to be out in the sunshine, you can always visit the Umami Hills (Umami-kyuryo) Park in North Katsuragi City. This wide public area has numerous large flower gardens for all seasons, including roses in May and June. You may also still see tulips in early May, and there are numerous ancient tumulus burial mounds.


Things to do in Nara May, Nara May events, Nara may, Umami hills Park, Umami kyu-ryo Park, Katsuragi,Nara top tourist attractions, Things to do and see in Nara Japan, things to do around Nara Japan, things to do at Nara park, things to do in Nara for the first time, things to do in Nara in 1 day, things to do in Nara Japan guide, where is Nara Japan, Nara city in Japan, Nara backpackers, Nara hotels, how long to spend in Nara, Nara in Japan, Nara  location, Nara Nara Japan, Nara map, best hotels in Nara, Nara Japan attractions, Nara Japan things to do, things to do in Nara winter, things to do in Nara with kids, things to do Nara Japan, top 10 tourist attractions in Nara Japan, top attractions in Nara Japan, top best things to see in Nara Japan, top ten things to do in Nara Japan, top things to see in Nara Japan, top tourist attractions in Nara Japan, tourism Nara Japan, tourist attractions in Nara Japan, travel to Nara Japan, unique things to do in Nara Japan, Nara tourism office, Nara city tourism, Nara Japan travel info, Nara Japan tourism, Nara Japan travel

To get there, take a train to Ikebe Station on the Kintetsu Tawaramoto Line, go out the north exit and it’s a further 15-minute-walk. From Goido Station on the Kintetsu Osaka Line there is a bus to the park on weekends.



Nara’s 3 Best Gardens for Spring

If you just want to enjoy nature in Nara City, May is an ideal time to visit any one of Nara’s popular gardens with various blooms popping off: 

  1. Yoshikien: A delightful little garden just around from the Nara Park Bus Terminal. Entry is free for tourists who can show their passport.

  2. Isuien: Next door to Yoshikien, Isuien Garden is Nara’s most famous garden encompassing an Edo and Meiji era style garden. Entry is 1 200 yen for adults and 500 yen for children.

  3. Former Daijou-in Temple Garden: This classic garden is located just in front of Nara Hotel. Entry is only 200 yen.



Things to do in Nara May, Nara May events, Nara may, Isuien Garden, Japanese garden, Nara top tourist attractions, Things to do and see in Nara Japan, things to do around Nara Japan, things to do at Nara park, things to do in Nara for the first time, things to do in Nara in 1 day, things to do in Nara Japan guide, where is Nara Japan, Nara city in Japan, Nara backpackers, Nara hotels, how long to spend in Nara, Nara in Japan, Nara  location, Nara Nara Japan, Nara map, best hotels in Nara, Nara Japan attractions, Nara Japan things to do, things to do in Nara winter, things to do in Nara with kids, things to do Nara Japan, top 10 tourist attractions in Nara Japan, top attractions in Nara Japan, top best things to see in Nara Japan, top ten things to do in Nara Japan, top things to see in Nara Japan, top tourist attractions in Nara Japan, tourism Nara Japan, tourist attractions in Nara Japan, travel to Nara Japan, unique things to do in Nara Japan, Nara tourism office, Nara city tourism, Nara Japan travel info, Nara Japan tourism, Nara Japan travel



Hike Mt. Katsuragi for Azaleas

For a fun day out, there are thousands of blooming azaleas on Mt. Katsuragi. It’s part of the Kongo-Ikoma mountain range and also has fantastic views over Osaka.

From Kintetsu or JR Gose Station, take a bus bound for the ropeway base Tozanguchi Station. The Katsuragi Ropeway fare is 950 yen one way and 1,500 yen for a return. Children are half price and a timetable is in the link above.


Things to do in Nara May, Nara May events, Nara may, Katsuragi, azaleas, Nara top tourist attractions, Things to do and see in Nara Japan, things to do around Nara Japan, things to do at Nara park, things to do in Nara for the first time, things to do in Nara in 1 day, things to do in Nara Japan guide, where is Nara Japan, Nara city in Japan, Nara backpackers, Nara hotels, how long to spend in Nara, Nara in Japan, Nara  location, Nara Nara Japan, Nara map, best hotels in Nara, Nara Japan attractions, Nara Japan things to do, things to do in Nara winter, things to do in Nara with kids, things to do Nara Japan, top 10 tourist attractions in Nara Japan, top attractions in Nara Japan, top best things to see in Nara Japan, top ten things to do in Nara Japan, top things to see in Nara Japan, top tourist attractions in Nara Japan, tourism Nara Japan, tourist attractions in Nara Japan, travel to Nara Japan, unique things to do in Nara Japan, Nara tourism office, Nara city tourism, Nara Japan travel info, Nara Japan tourism, Nara Japan travel



Toshodai-ji Temple Fan Throwing Festival

Toshodai-ji Temple is a leisurely stroll from Nara’s famous Yakushi-ji Temple. It has beautifully shaded grounds and their large Buddha statues are national treasures. This ‘fan throwing event’ celebrates the life and death of the temple founder with the distribution of 1000 fans or ‘uchiwa’. These talismans that can ward off illness, evil spirits, and ensure safe childbirth. Read more about the Uchiwamaki Fan Ceremony.



Nara May Events


Date: May 19

Time: Chukonkibonmo-e (a ritual with Bugaku performance): 13:00 – 14:00

Uchiwamaki: 15:00

Fee: 1,000 yen entry


The ‘uchiwa-maki’ or fan throwing starts at around 3 pm. You can catch a bus back to Yamato Saidai-ji Station, but, if you follow the signs to ‘Yakushi-ji’ (薬師寺), there are local shops and restaurants along the way. Kintetsu Nishinokyo is the nearest station to Toshodai-ji Temple and it's a 10-minute-walk.



Amazing Ice Blocks at Himuro-jinja Shrine

Japanese temples, and especially shrines, are known for their unique and engaging customs, traditions, and festivals. Himuro-jinja Shrine, located on the main road towards Nara Park, is no exception.


Things to do in Nara May, Nara May events, Nara may, himuro-jinja Shrine, Ice festival, Kengyo Festival, 献氷祭, Nara top tourist attractions, Things to do and see in Nara Japan, things to do around Nara Japan, things to do at Nara park, things to do in Nara for the first time, things to do in Nara in 1 day, things to do in Nara Japan guide, where is Nara Japan, Nara city in Japan, Nara backpackers, Nara hotels, how long to spend in Nara, Nara in Japan, Nara  location, Nara Nara Japan, Nara map, best hotels in Nara, Nara Japan attractions, Nara Japan things to do, things to do in Nara winter, things to do in Nara with kids, things to do Nara Japan, top 10 tourist attractions in Nara Japan, top attractions in Nara Japan, top best things to see in Nara Japan, top ten things to do in Nara Japan, top things to see in Nara Japan, top tourist attractions in Nara Japan, tourism Nara Japan, tourist attractions in Nara Japan, travel to Nara Japan, unique things to do in Nara Japan, Nara tourism office, Nara city tourism, Nara Japan travel info, Nara Japan tourism, Nara Japan travel

During the reign of the Empress Genmei (707–715 ), the shrine was appointed as the official ice storehouse to the imperial court. On the 1st of the 6th month of the lunar calendar, ice blocks were examined for their thickness—thicker ice meant a better rice harvest year.

After the shrine was relocated to its present site, its traditions were revived and modernized. Now ice makers from around the country come to the shrine to receive blessings for the year’s business ahead.


Things to do in Nara May, Nara May events, Nara may, himuro-jinja Shrine, Ice festival, Kengyo Festival, 献氷祭, Nara top tourist attractions, Things to do and see in Nara Japan, things to do around Nara Japan, things to do at Nara park, things to do in Nara for the first time, things to do in Nara in 1 day, things to do in Nara Japan guide, where is Nara Japan, Nara city in Japan, Nara backpackers, Nara hotels, how long to spend in Nara, Nara in Japan, Nara  location, Nara Nara Japan, Nara map, best hotels in Nara, Nara Japan attractions, Nara Japan things to do, things to do in Nara winter, things to do in Nara with kids, things to do Nara Japan, top 10 tourist attractions in Nara Japan, top attractions in Nara Japan, top best things to see in Nara Japan, top ten things to do in Nara Japan, top things to see in Nara Japan, top tourist attractions in Nara Japan, tourism Nara Japan, tourist attractions in Nara Japan, travel to Nara Japan, unique things to do in Nara Japan, Nara tourism office, Nara city tourism, Nara Japan travel info, Nara Japan tourism, Nara Japan travel

Nara May Events

Every May 1, two large clear ice pillars—one with sea bream and the other with carp frozen in still-life—are presented at the Kempyo Festival (献氷祭) or celebration. You can also view flowers frozen in ice and various offerings of shaved ice together with dance and music.


Date: May 1

Time: 11:00 to 15:00; Music 14:00 to 15:00

Location: 1-4 Kasuganocho, Nara, 630-8212



Enjoy Takigi Noh by Bonfire Light

Noh is a type of drama incorporating music, dance, and masked characters. Noh Takigi happens, as in the days of old, within the view of large bonfire torches. The location is outside, near to Kofuku-ji Temple. The fee is for the seating area only. Those who can find standing space can enjoy the event for free.


Dates: Fri, May 17 and Sat, May 18

Time: 17:30

Fee: 5,000 yen for a seat



Explore Mt. Kono and Yamazoe Village  

Yamazoe Village is on the eastern boundary of Nara, and, together with Yagyu Village, encapsulates Nara’s Best Satoyama Experience. During May, Yamazoe’s Mt. Kono is aflush with azaleas and it also has a popular stargazing platform.  The best way to explore Yamazoe Village is by car and the only public transport available is a highway bus. 


Apart from numerous hikes and walks, you can enjoy forest ziplining at Adventure Forest, cycling around Lake Nunome, and various workshops and things around for kids to do. 

There are a few small local places to stay, but for something different you can try your hand at glamping at Deluxs Outside Resort or the relaxing Ume, Yamazoe.



Things to do in Nara May, Nara May events, Nara may, Ume Yamazoe, Nara top tourist attractions, Things to do and see in Nara Japan, things to do around Nara Japan, things to do at Nara park, things to do in Nara for the first time, things to do in Nara in 1 day, things to do in Nara Japan guide, where is Nara Japan, Nara city in Japan, Nara backpackers, Nara hotels, how long to spend in Nara, Nara in Japan, Nara  location, Nara Nara Japan, Nara map, best hotels in Nara, Nara Japan attractions, Nara Japan things to do, things to do in Nara winter, things to do in Nara with kids, things to do Nara Japan, top 10 tourist attractions in Nara Japan, top attractions in Nara Japan, top best things to see in Nara Japan, top ten things to do in Nara Japan, top things to see in Nara Japan, top tourist attractions in Nara Japan, tourism Nara Japan, tourist attractions in Nara Japan, travel to Nara Japan, unique things to do in Nara Japan, Nara tourism office, Nara city tourism, Nara Japan travel info, Nara Japan tourism, Nara Japan travel


Get Groovin’ at ‘Nara for Culture’ Music Festivities

Nara for Culture (Japanese) is an arts promotional festival that runs from May into the end of December. You can use Google Translate to browse the website. Music genres range from classic to jazz, blues, rock, and different types of folk music. Classical music performances are held in various music halls, while contemporary music events often take place in cafes and livehouse bar locations. Prices differ according to location, and some cafe events are free as long as you order food from the menu. There are also free outdoor events and daytime as well as evening performances.



Special Events at Historic Nara Shrines and Temples

If you enjoy visiting temples, there are often special events to make your day more joyful and interactive: 


Todai-ji Temple Emperor Shomu Festival, May 2: This annual festival, within the main precinct of the temple, celebrates the 45th Emperor of Japan who founded Todai-ji Temple. The key event is a colorful procession at 1 pm, however, outside you can also enjoy music, gagaki dance, and Noh for free at the Kagami-ike Pond,


Things to do in Nara May, Nara May events, Nara may, Toda-ji Temple, Kagami-ike Pond,Nara top tourist attractions, Things to do and see in Nara Japan, things to do around Nara Japan, things to do at Nara park, things to do in Nara for the first time, things to do in Nara in 1 day, things to do in Nara Japan guide, where is Nara Japan, Nara city in Japan, Nara backpackers, Nara hotels, how long to spend in Nara, Nara in Japan, Nara  location, Nara Nara Japan, Nara map, best hotels in Nara, Nara Japan attractions, Nara Japan things to do, things to do in Nara winter, things to do in Nara with kids, things to do Nara Japan, top 10 tourist attractions in Nara Japan, top attractions in Nara Japan, top best things to see in Nara Japan, top ten things to do in Nara Japan, top things to see in Nara Japan, top tourist attractions in Nara Japan, tourism Nara Japan, tourist attractions in Nara Japan, travel to Nara Japan, unique things to do in Nara Japan, Nara tourism office, Nara city tourism, Nara Japan travel info, Nara Japan tourism, Nara Japan travel

Tsubosaka-dera Temple: With a take-away gift cloth you can wipe the feet and body of their gorgeous wooden 1000-armed-Avalokiteshvara. The event runs from April 27 to June 30 and the fee is 500 yen on top of normal entry of 800 yen.


Horyu-ji Temple: If you visit the World Heritage Horyu-ji, the Yumedono Hall has a special viewing of its Kannon figure up until May 18.

Kasuga-taisha Shrine: On Children’s Day, May 5, from 13:00 there is the small Tango no Sekku Festival and a Gagaku dance can be viewed from the main hall. On May 10, there is a tea offering ceremony you can watch at 11:00.



Thank you for reading Things To Do In Nara - May Events

Nara May Events


 

Arthor: NARA Visitor Center & Inn

188 views0 comments

Recent Posts

See All

Commenti


bottom of page