Wakakusa Yamayaki: Grass burning festival at Mt.Wakakusa in Nara, Japan


What is “Wakakusa yamayaki” at Mt.Wakakusa?

“Wakakusa yamayaki” is an traditional event in Nara city. There is a mountain called “Wakakusayama” and the grass on the mountain are burned after some fireworks.

The history of “Wakakusa Yamayaki”

There are 2 theories why this grass burning festival starts.

One of the theories is that both of Todaiji temple and Kofukuji temple had their properties in the Mt.Kasuga around the time of 1760. However, they argued how to locate the boundary fence between the properties and did not make a resolution by themselves so they had to ask a court to settle this dispute. The solution by the court was to burn the both of the fences and the entire mountain. It is said that this is the beginning of Wakakusa Yamayaki.

The other theory is that the purpose for burning grass on the mountain was to console the spirit of the ghost from a tomb (Uguisu-zuka) near from Mt.Wakakusa who often appeared on the mountain and scared the neighborhoods.
It was believed that unlucky things happen without burning it

The movie about “Wakakusayamayaki”

The date and time of Wakakusayamayaki in 2016

The date: 23rd of Jan, 2016 The time: Fireworks-18:15〜, Wakakusayamayaki-18:30〜

Four great places to see Wakakusa yamayaki

  1. On the bottom of Wakakusa mountain

    20min from Kintetsu Nara station on foot

  2. Oike

    14min from Nishinokyo station on foot
    15min from Kujyo station on foot


  3. Nara Kasugano International Forum

    20min from Kintetsu Nara station on foot

  4. Heijyokyo

    10min from Yamato Saidaiji station on foot



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