The Danjiri Kaikan is a major museum located in Kishiwada, Osaka, near Kishiwada Castle.
Provides reference materials and files from the Kishiwada Danjiri Festival, very famous in Japan. Visitors not only learn about the history and structure of the danjiri (floats), but can also see a movie from the Danjiri Festival.
Apart from that, they have displays of actual danjiri that were used from the end of the Edo Period until today. In addition, some of the musical instruments used in the great celebration are displayed.
In one place in the museum you will find an explanation of the carpentry process used to build the Danjiri, as well as a large illustration of the stories that are carved on the floats.
The Danjiri Matsuri (float festival) is said to have its origin in the “Inari Matsuri”, celebrated in the year 16 of the Genroku era (1703). Created by the Lord of Kishiwada Castle to pray for a bountiful harvest. The festival, from its inception, had great local support.
With 300 years of tradition, the Kishiwada Danjiri Matsuri is proudly celebrated in September each year. 34 Danjiri teams bring their holy chariot on a quick tour of this city. It is a race of strength, endurance and celebration.
Each Danjiri is handcrafted, entirely from zelkova wood. It weighs about 4 tons, measures 3.8 meters high, 4 meters long and 2.5 meters wide. The traction rope has a length of 100 to 200 meters and is pulled by 500 to 1000 people.
On the third floor of the Museum there is a small gallery displaying carefully designed miniature models of the Danjiri, made from the same types of wood, cloth and rope used in reality.
On the fourth floor you can directly experience the danjiri festival. There, the roof and the main body of a Danjiri are shown separately. Visitors can climb onto the rooftops and pose for photos in traditional happi coats. They can also try playing the distinctive bell and taiko drums used at the Festival. In addition, there is a virtual reality attraction where visitors can appreciate what it feels like to drive a danjiri.
Likewise, they can climb the roof of the displayed danjiri and experience the same as the daikugata, the men who jump and dance energetically on the rooftops of the danjiri.
On the first floor of the Museum there is an area dedicated to the NHK television novel “Carnation”, which is about the life of one of Japan’s most famous dressmakers. She lived her whole life in Kishiwada and was very supportive of the Danjiri festival.
The museum is friendly and informative, with many attractions for the enjoyment of adults and children.