THE STAR FESTIVAL: TANABATA MATSURI
We cannot think of a better way for you to spend your summer than relaxing at the Asia Gardens Hotel & Thai Spa, an Asian luxury resort with a lot to offer, next to the Mediterranean. During the summer, it’s not all about relaxation, there are also plenty of festivals all over the world to enjoy, today, we’re telling you about the Tanabata Matsuri.
The Tanabata Matsuri or “Star Festival”, is a night festival held once a year and inspired by a legend. They celebrate “Orihime” and “Hikoboshi”, separated by the Milky Way, a river of stars crossing the sky, that only takes place once a year when it’s no training, and if it doesn’t rain it has to be postponed until the following year.
Nowadays, in Japan, people often celebrate this festival by writing their wishes, sometimes as a poem, on strips of coloured paper or “tanzaku”, and later hanging them on bamboo tree branches next to other ornaments.
Towards the end of the festival, the bamboo branches and ornaments are often taken to the river and burnt once the festival is over.
The purpose of it all is for everyone’s wishes to come true. Wishes mainly have to do with health, success and love.
Handwriting is important when writing wishes in Tanabata Matsuri, hence the month of July being called “fumizuki” (the month of the letters) according to the ancient Japanese calendar.
The streets are decorated with paper ornaments, large streamers imitating the stars on the Milky Way where the characters of the legend lived, and there also parades on the streets. The evening fireworks give the finishing touch to one of the most cheerful and colourful festivals in Japan.
A traditional song is sung on Tanabata Matsuri, it goes something like this:
Bamboo branches whisper
back and forth on the roof.
The stars are shining
over the silver and golden sand.
The five-colour paper strips
have already been written.
The stars shine
and stare at us from the sky.
We hope your wish to come and visit us at the Asia Gardens Hotel & Thai Spa, the best Asian luxury resort in the Mediterranean, comes true this year. Come and enjoy our pools, restaurants and spa facilities… We hope to see you soon! Don’t forget, wishes sometimes do come true.