Compiled by Philbert Ono, updated: Aug. 3, 2023
Here’s my 2023 summer fireworks (hanabi) schedule for Shiga Prefecture listed by date. Most fireworks will finally be held normally after being canceled during the pandemic.
If the weather is bad, the fireworks will be postponed or canceled. “More info” links go to Japanese-language pages. (No information in English except here.) If you call any phone number for more info, you must speak in Japanese.
Weather update (as of Aug. 3, 2023): Typhoon No. 6 might reach Shiga on Aug. 7 and 8.
July 7, 2023
♦ Yagawa Jinja Tanabata Matsuri Hanabi in Koka, Festival starts at 4:00 pm, fireworks from 7:15 pm –
The shrine first holds a Tanabata Festival where you can write your wish on paper tag and hang it on a branch. Then watch hand-held cannon fireworks (手筒花火) in the parking lot for about an hour. To be followed by aerial fireworks at 8:15 pm. In case of foul weather, to be canceled. 10-min. walk from JR Konan Station. Map
矢川神社 七夕まつり 花火
More info: https://sp.jorudan.co.jp/hanabi/spot_J0045.html Phone: xx
July 15, 2023
♦ Echigawa Gion Noryo Hanabi Taikai in Aisho, 7:30 pm – 9:00 pm
At two locations along the Echigawa River bank near Miyukibashi Bridge. 15-min. walk from Ohmi Railways Echigawa Station. If rained out, to be postponed to July 16. About 40,000 people are expected. Map
More info: 愛知川駅コミュニティハウスるーぶる愛知川 Phone: 0749-42-8444
July 22, 2023
♦ Yokaichi Shotoku Matsuri (Finale Fireworks) in Higashi-Omi, 7:00 pm – 8:30 pm
This is a dance festival (7:40 pm–8:15 pm) near Yokaichi Station (Ohmi Railways) climaxing with fireworks at the end. The festival is a huge bon dance with 600 dancers dancing to Shiga’s native Goshu Ondo folk songs. A large section of the main road in front of Yokaichi Station is closed to traffic for the festival. The festival is named after Shotoku Taishi. Map | Video
More info: 八日市商工会議所 Phone: 0748-22-0186
♦ Otsu Shiga Hanabi Taikai fireworks, 7:30 pm –
Watch the fireworks over the lake from the famous Omi-Maiko beach. Near JR Omi-Maiko Station (JR Kosei Line) in western Otsu. If rained out, to be postponed to ??.
More info: 大津志賀花火大会実行委員会 Phone: 077-592-0378
♦ Shigaraki Fire Festival fireworks, Koka, 7:00 pm – 9:30 pm
Torch procession of 700 people (including children) who carry wooden torches on their shoulders from Shingu Shrine (新宮神社) to Atago Shrine on a hill and ending at the parking lot of the Shimin Center. The festival starts at 7 pm and the route is about 2.4 km long, taking about 50-60 min. From 9 pm, they shoot fireworks. The festival is held to give thanks to fire (for use in pottery kilns, industry, everyday life, etc.) and to pray for fire safety. Shingu Shrine and the Shimin Center are near Shigaraki Station (Shigaraki Kogen Railway).
More info: 陶都・信楽まつり実行委員会 信楽火まつり事務局 (Phone: 0748-82-0873
♦ Kusatsu Yoshi-Taimatsu Matsuri torch festival and fireworks, 5:00 pm – 8:00 pm
Held on Karasuma Peninsula (near Lake Biwa Museum). Torches made of lake reeds will be lit with fireworks in the background at 7:50 pm. Buses run from JR Kusatsu Station at 4:30 pm, 5 pm, 6 pm, and 6:30 pm (get off at Biwako Hakubutsukan). Last return bus for Kusatsu Station leaves at 7:24 pm (you’ll miss the fireworks). If rained out, to be canceled.
More info: 草津ヨシ松明まつり実行委員会 Phone: 077-568-0075
♦ Yasu Hanabi Taikai –CANCELLED– in Yasu, 7:45 pm – 8:25 pm
Along the Shin River. 25-min. by shuttle bus from JR Yasu Station. Shuttle buses will be running. Stage entertainment will start at 4 pm. If rained out, to be cancelled. Map
More info: 野洲市商工観光課 TEL: 077-587-6008
July 28, 2023
♦ Mitarashi-sai Festival fireworks at Karasaki Shrine, Otsu, 8:00 pm –
Famous for its big pine tree, Karasaki Shrine holds a religious ceremony to dispel bad things in your mind and body to have a healthy summer. Ceremony starts at 11 am and 7 pm. At 7:15 pm on the lake, a small fire is lit to burn old talismans. Taiko drumming at 7:30 pm, and handheld cannon fireworks (手筒花火) are shot from 8 pm. In case of foul weather, to be canceled. Karasaki Shrine is on the lakeshore near JR Karasaki Station on the JR Kosei Line. Map
More info: 日吉大社 Phone: 077-578-0009
July 29, 2023
♦ Koka-ryu Nin-nin Dai-Hanabi fireworks in Minakuchi, Koka, 7:45 pm –
Koka’s biggest fireworks display held along Yasu River near Minakuchi-bashi Bridge. Part of a local festival of stage entertainment, games, and food stalls. If it rains, it will be postponed to July 30. 10-min. walk from Ohmi Railways Minakuchi Jonan Station. Map
More info: 甲賀市観光協会 Phone: 0748-60-2690
Aug. 1, 2023
♦ Ogoto Onsen Noryo Hanabi Taikai in Ogoto Port, Otsu, 8 pm – 8:30 pm
20-min. walk from JR Ogoto Onsen Station. Fireworks can be seen from most onsen (hot spring) ryokan and outdoor baths in Ogoto. If rained out, to be canceled. Map
More info: おごと温泉観光協会 Phone: 077-578-1650
♦ Omi-Imazu Furusato Natsu Matsuri, Takashima, 9:00 pm – 9:30 pm
Climax of Imazu’s summer festival starting from 1 pm. Includes stage entertainment, folk dancing, lanterns, and food stalls. Takashima Shimin Kaikan near JR Omi-Imazu Station.
More info: 近江今津ふるさと夏まつり実行委員会事務局 Phone: 0740-22-2108
Aug. 5, 2023
♦ Konan Natsu Matsuri in Konan, fireworks at 8:00 pm
Summer festival starts at 4:00 pm with Goshu Ondo bon dance, stage entertainment, etc. Climaxes with fireworks at 8:00 pm. Held at the Yasugawa River Shinzui Koen park (野洲川親水公園).
More info: 湖南市観光協会 Phone: 0748-71-2157
♦ Ujisato Matsuri in Hino, 8:45 pm – 9 pm
Fireworks is the climax of this summer festival (bon dance, etc.) held in the northern parking lot of Hino Town Hall starting in mid-afternoon.
More info: 日野町イベント実行委員会 Phone: 0748-52-6562
♦ Kotonarie Summer Festa in Hibari Park in Higashi-Omi
Part of an illumination and music festival held from Aug. 5th to 13th. Fireworks on Aug. 5 at 8:40 pm. 20-min. by bus from Yokaichi Station.
More info: 東近江市湖東商工会 Phone: 0749-45-2571
Aug. 8, 2023
♦ Biwako Dai-Hanabi Taikai at Hama-Otsu and Nagisa Park in Otsu, 7:30 pm – 8:30 pm
This is the big one, but a very steep admission (¥6,000 to ¥25,000, even for children above age 3) is charged for paid seating along Hama-Otsu. Hama-Otsu Port will be totally walled off so you cannot see the fireworks from the street. Viewing areas along Nagisa Park that used to be free are no longer free. They will have about 50,000 paid seating along the shore, more than ever before. This will reduce the free-viewing area to make it even more terribly crowded with people (about 350,000). Spectacular show (and cost), but have fun trying to get home via the tiny nearby train stations or gridlocked roads afterward. Foul weather will postpone it to Aug. 10. Map
More info: びわ湖大花火大会実行委員会 Phone: 077-511-1530
Aug. 11, 2023
♦ Takamiya Noryo Hanabi Taikai in Takamiya, Hikone, 8:00 pm – 9:00 pm
Near the Inugami River Muchinbashi Bridge. 10-min. walk from Ohmi Railways Takamiya Station. If rained out, to be postponed to Aug. 13. Map
More info: 高宮商工繁栄会 Phone: 0749-22-2075
Aug. 16, 2023
♦ Somagawa Natsu Matsuri near Kibukawa Station, Koka
Fireworks are part of the summer festival with taiko drummers and lantern floating on the river. Held annually on Aug. 16.
More info: 甲賀市観光協会 Phone: 0748-65-0708
Aug. 17, 2023
♦ Takebe Taisha Senkosai Fireworks at Seta River in Otsu, 7:50 pm – 8:55 pm
Near Seta-no-Karahashi Bridge. Short walk from Karahashi-mae Station on the Keihan Line. Fireworks will climax the waterborne Takebe Taisha Senkosai festival on boats starting at 4 pm. Map
More info: 建部大社 Phone: 077-545-0038
Sept. 5th–8th, 2023
♦ Nagahama Kita-Biwako Hanabi Taikai at Hokoen Park, 8:30 pm – 8:50 pm
10-min. walk from JR Nagahama Station. Admission (amount not disclosed) charged every night, limited to only 600 people per night. If rained out, to be cancelled. Map
More info: 長浜市観光振興課 Phone: 0749-65-6521
No info yet (as of July 15)…
♦ ??Kinomoto Jizo Dai-ennichi fireworks in Nagahama, 8:00 pm – 8:30 pm
Held near JR Kinomoto Station. Climax of a local festival with food stalls and games held during Aug. 22–25.
More info: ふるさと夏まつり実行委員会 Phone: 0749-82-5900
♦ ??Takashima Summer Festival at Makino Sunny Beach, Takashima, 9:00 pm (No info yet)
Fireworks is part of their summer festival that starts at 4 pm.
More info: たかしま夏まつり実行委員会 Phone: 0740-36-2011
♦ ??Makino Summer Carnival at Makino Sunny Beach, Takashima, 8:30 pm
More info: 四季遊園マキノ交流促進協議会事務局 Phone: 0740-28-8002
hanabi (花火) – fireworks
hanabi taikai (花火大会) – fireworks (sometimes a contest)
Natsu Matsuri (夏まつり) – Summer festival
noryo (納涼) – Enjoying the cool of a summer evening (at a river, park, etc.)