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Tsurugaoka Hachimangu Yabusame Ritual
An ancient Shinto ritual of over 800 years, offering a glimpse back into the valiant samurai culture.
Tsurugaoka Hachimangu's Annual Grand Festival is held in all its grandeur across three days, from September 14th to 16th each year. On the final day, the 16th, the "Yabusame Ritual" is known especially to draw a crowd from all around.
"Yabusame" is a traditional martial art that combines horse riding and archery, where the practitioner shoots arrows at targets while riding a horse. Due to its difficulty, it is considered the "ultimate martial art."
The Yabusame ritual at Tsurugaoka Hachimangu began with a dedication by Minamoto no Yoritomo in 1187 praying for peace and prosperity in the realm. Since then, the custom has continued here for over 800 years. Today, the ritual are carried out by the Ogasawara school of horse-back archery at the autumn festival.
Once at the Yabusame ritual you’ll find archers dressed like Kamakura samurai run through a course of about 250 meters (140 ken) on horseback, shooting arrows at three targets in succession. Swing by for a truly firsthand experience to see gallant samurai culture at its peak.
Annual custom held on September 16th, the final day of the Annual Grand Festival each year.
A truly one-of-a-kind chance to see into over 800 years of samurai culture and history.
See the events carried out by real archers in authentic Kamakura samurai attire.
- Name in Japanese
- 鶴岡八幡宮 流鏑馬神事
- 0467-22-0315 (Tsurugaoka Hachimangu)
- Every year on September 16
- About a 10-minute walk from the east exit of the JR Yokosuka Line / Enoshima Electric Railway’s Kamakura Station
- Official Website
- Official Website (English)