3 Shrines 1 Festival:
The Hachinohe Sansha Taisai

The Float-Design Winners of the 2023

During the Hachinohe Sansha Taisai, a panel made up of 36 people examines and judges the 27 floats of the festival.  Unlike other float festival such as Nebuta, the floats for the Hachinohe Sansha Taisai are not made by professionals, but instead are made by regular people in each of the neighborhoods that participate in the festival. Far from quelling any friendly rivalry, the promise of winning the coveted best float prize is a fierce motivator with each neighborhood trying to out-build, out-decorate, and out-do all the others.

Grand Prize 


1.What is the Hachinohe Sansha Taisai?

Boasting a history of over 290 years, the Hachinohe Sansha Taisai (Three Shrine Festival) has been designated as a National Important Intangible Folk Cultural Property.

The most notable highlight is the procession of mikoshi (portable shrines) from Ogami Shrine, Chojasan Shinra Shrine, and Shinmei-gu Shrine, as well as the parade of floats (called dashi) featuring subjects such as mythological figures and kabuki characters. As the floats which can reach heights of 10m and widths of 8m pass by, spectators often shout with joy. The nighttime parade of illuminated floats seems to hover in the night air and creates a fantastical atmosphere that provides a completely different way to enjoy the festivities.

 Every year for the 5 days from July 31 to August 4, Hachinohe is enveloped in a unique excitement. Over one million people visit the festival by the time it is over. Although it is not as well-known as other summer festivals in the prefecture such as the Nebuta festival, the Sansha Taisai certainly comes second to none when it comes to luster, atmosphere, brilliance, or passion of the festival. The festival takes place before many other summer festivals in the prefecture so if you’re interested in seeing a unique and less crowded festival, come and see the Sansha Taisai and continue on your trip to the northern and western portions of the prefecture after!

2.The Hachinohe Sansha Taisai Video
“The Japanese Traditional Arts” 八戸三社大祭
【Long ver.】

The Hachinohe Sansha Taisai Video
“The Japanese Traditional Arts” 八戸三社大祭
【Short ver.】


3.「The Hachinohe Sansha Taisai Festival Float Exhibit」

「Journey to the West: The Monkey King Fights to the Death」

The ‘Hachinohe Festival Float Promotion Group’ is made up of several young members of the city’s neighborhood festival groups. This group which is a collection of some of the city’s most talented young workers gathered together to make this tour deforce float. Many of the festivals floats source their themes from various tales, plays, classics, and legends. One of the most popular themes is scenes from the Chinese classic ‘Journey to the West’ which is well known in Japan. This float brings to life one of its famous scenes in the most dynamic and lively fashion, and viewers practically feel that the characters are about to burst off the stage and into real life. The life-size contrast and perspective adjustments executed between the top and bottom, front and back portions of the float add to its dynamics and for which it is called a ‘half-cut style festival float’. You can see the above float on the first floor of the YouTree Building.

The Festival Float Exhibit at the Choja Festival Square

Exhibit Period: August 13 ~ 15, from 13:00~16:00
※The floats accompanying the festival band will perform at 16:00, 17:00, and 17:45 on August 13.

The Mini Festival Float in Hachhi (The Seven Gods of Fortune & the Treasure Boat)

The Hachinohe Portal Museum ‘hacchi’ is home to this mini-festival float called ‘The Seven Gods of Fortune & Treasure Boat’. It is around a 1/3~1/5 scale of the original, but it has as much extravagance, splendor, and elegance as a full-scale festival float.

Of particular note is the beautiful details of the splashing waves, typical of the wave float style in which it was made.

Mini Dashi No. 2 (Journey to the West)

The mini-festival float (Journey to the West) is located on the first floor of the main building of Hachinohe city Hall. It can be disassembled and easily put back together so it has been displayed at many different events and exhibits outside the prefecture.

The above photo was taken when it was displayed at an event in the Tokyo Dome.

4.The Hachinohe Sansha Taisai (Three-Shrine Festival) Exhibit

The Hachinohe Sansha Taisai (Three-Shrine Festival) Exhibit opened in July 2018. The exhibit displays all you need to know about Hacihnohe’s most famous festival, including its origins, history, unique characteristics, and more, all in a clear and multilingual format. Also on display is a half-cut dashi or the upper portion of one of the actual floats that was used during the festival. This amazing and visible striking exhibit allows visitors to experience a piece of Hachinohe’s exiting summer festival at any time during the year!

1-9-22 Ichibanchō, Hachinohe, Aomori
1st Floor of the YouTree Building (Directly next to Hachinohe Station)
(Tourism Section of Hachinohe City Hall)
9 AM ~ 6 PM
the New Year’s holiday
Entrance Fee:
Directly next to Hachinohe Station (1F of the YouTree Building)
Paid Parking Available in Surrounding Area