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Obon Festival is a Buddhist ritual that commemorates the deceased ancestors of families. It is believed that their spirits return and visit their families. This festival is usually celebrated around August 15, annually.

Bon Odori 

Simply known as the “Bon Dance” is a dance ritual performed during Obon. Some places have their own interpretation of dance depending on the region.


In Kyoto, a fire is lit on the mountain with the character “大” or “Dai” meaning “big”. It represents the word “`大文字” (Daimonji). This event usually happens on the last day of Obon.


Cotton kimonos are often worn during Obon festival especially when performing the Bon Odori.


As the Obon Festival ends, the families help their ancestors back to their grave by lighting chochin lanterns. It is believed that these lanterns guide their ancestors their way back to heaven where they used to belong.


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