The Giant Pink Penis Festival of Kanamara

The Giant Pink Penis
Festival (Kanamara Matsuri)

Each year, Kawasaki city is home of the giant pink penis festival, an
event centered on only one thing:  the male’s reproductive
organ.  Tourists flock toWhen:
First Sunday of April
Kanamara Shrine, Kawasaki-city
the festival site to see
the huge
pink penis parade in the streets, eat penis shapped candies, buy small
penis toys, etc.  Lots of fun and laughter is had by all but
this festival has a deeper, more important meaning than just the
worship of the penis.

The giant pink penis festival of Kanamara.

The Origin of the Giant Pink Penis Festival

Image from

During the Edo period (early 1600s) Kawasaki became a
important town, being

so close to the capital (only a river separates Tokyo to
Kawasaki.) Kawasaki  It was also one of the last stops for
travelers on the Tōkaidō between Edo and other  western
destinations.  Like all good tourist area, Kawasaki had its
share of recreation for weary travellers.  One such
“recreation” was the famous tea houses.  In these tea houses,
they didn’t only sell tea but also the use of young women for a limited

Kanamara shrine was visited by such prostitutes to pray for
the protection of the gods agains venereal diseases.  

The legend goes that a women’s vagina was inhabited with a
toothed demon who would bite off the penis of men.  After
having castrated  her newly-wed husband on two different
occasion, she went to see a metalsmith who made her a penis made of
metal to break the teeth of the demon, thus allowing her to have a
normal life.  (would the toothed demon be an allegory for a

With time, the local prostitutes visited the shrine for
protection against STDs and other people went to pray for fertility,
abondance in business and in life.  

The Giant Pink Penis Festival Today

Today, the festival is a huge touristic attraction with thousands of
people flocking to the event.

The festival is today used to bring awareness to STDs in
general and raise funds to combat HIV.  

People can take pictures with the giant pink penis, ride the battering
ram sized  penis, buy penis shaped candies, dress as penises,
carve penis shaped vegetables, etc.  Lots of fun!

I will be adding pictures of the festival here for your viewing
pleasure and, above all, your education on the giant Pink Penis


This is when the merriment  begins.  People dress up,
parade and take pictures, many stands are available around the shrine
to buy stuff like food, candies and other souvenirs.

15:00 to

The festival winds down and the daikon carvers from 11:45 are judged
and prizes are given to the winners.  The winners of the
costumed parade are also announced.  A banquet follows.

Do you have pictures of the festival that you would like featured here?
 Use the contact form on the contact
page to let us know.




With gratitude,signature Hugo

New! Comments

Have your say about what you just read! Leave me a comment in the box below.