O-shiro Castle Festival – お城まつり

From the end of March to mid-April

Matsue Castle is one of the best places to view cherry blossoms in Matsue, and while they are in bloom there is a festival held on the castle grounds. You can enjoy stage performances like impressive Kagura dances or drum concerts for free on weekends. The castle tower is also open until later than usual and night-time illuminations make the entire castle grounds an enchanting place.

Matsue Musha Gyoretsu Warrior Parade – 松江武者行列

Every year on the first Saturday of April

This annual event celebrates the founding of Matsue by re-enacting the symbolic entrance of Lord Horio Yoshiharu and his troops to his newly built castle town. Participants parade through Matsue in warrior armour, elegant kimono, and other outfits reminiscent of the early Edo period. In case of rain, the event may be held indoors.

URL: Matsue Musha Gyoretsu Warrior Parade (jp)  ››  Click here

Aofushigaki Ritual – 青柴垣神事

Every year on April 7th

Held in the early afternoon at Mihonoseki Harbour, the Aofushigaki Ritual re-enacts a famous episode of the Kojiki (Records of Ancient Matters), written in 713 and regarded as one of the most important records of the early history of Japan. This solemn Shinto ritual is based on the “Transfer of the Land Myth” (Kuni-yuzuri Shinwa), that tells of Kotoshironushi disappearing from the visible world by going into the sea after he agreed to concede the lands to the sun goddess, Amaterasu. Kotoshironushi, also known as Ebisu, is the son of Okuninushi, worshipped at Izumo Taisha Grand Shrine on the other side of the Shimane Peninsula.