Focus on Saitama Prefecture, Kumagaya City

Adjoining Tokyo, Saitama Prefecture (along with Kanagawa and Chiba prefectures) is part of the Greater Tokyo Area, which represents the home of over a quarter of Japan’s entire population.

As such, easy access allows many of the area’s residents to work, study and play in Tokyo on a daily basis…classic commuter belt. And because of its convenient location near Tokyo, Saitama has many of its own natural, historical and cultural attractions that visitors from Tokyo and elsewhere come to enjoy.

Kumagaya City is in northern Saitama, and enjoys a particularly rich rugby history. A longtime power in high school rugby, Kumagaya is even called Japanese rugby’s “hallowed ground of the East,” in recognition of its hosting the annual spring national high school rugby tournament, one of the two major national high school rugby tournaments in Japan.

Kumagaya is famous for its cherry blossoms, including Sakurazutsumi along the Arakawa. Also, the delights of Shoden-zan Kangi-in Shoden-do temple’s gorgeous decoration, a national treasure!

http://www.worldrugby.org/photos/212868

“Kumagaya Uchiwa Festival”

Chichibu Yomatsuri is one of Japan’s three major Hikiyama Festival. Fireworks that go up into the night sky from the floats that are turned and pulled to the sounding beat of Yataibayashi with great power. Kumagaya Uchiwa Festival referred to as one of the Gion Festival of Kanto. Watching the twelve oats cruise with Kumagaya musical accompaniment is a gorgeous luxury.

http://www.worldrugby.org/photos/212869

“Gokabo are one of the most famous sweets of Kumagaya”

Hosokawa-Shi (paper) that has been a UNESCO Intangible Cultural Heritage since 2014, is traditional handmade Japanese paper that is durable and has a shiny gloss. Gokabo are one of the most famous sweets of Kumagaya. Its fragrant smell combined with its rustic taste is tantalizing and some very popular and nostalgic.

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