Home Events - Exoteric Japan January in Japan Japanese Cultural Calendar Toka Ebisu or Ebisu‘s Festival Day 十日戎 とおかえびす 
People walking along the store way with images of Ebisu going to the festival at Imayama Ebisu Shrine in Osaka.

Date

Jan 10 2025

Time

All Day

Toka Ebisu or Ebisu‘s Festival Day 十日戎 とおかえびす 

Day for the Buddhist Deity of Commerce

Ebisu is a fishing god in western Japan and a fishing and agricultural god in eastern Japan. Ebisu’s Festival Day is not always on January 10th. Sometimes its on January 20th and sometimes its in October. So you need to check your local area, but in Tokyo January 10th seems to be the big day. Though not a public holiday it is a day when various shrines have festivals honoring Ebisu and perhaps fish and lucky goods like rakes can be bought particularly cheaply!

The First Big Festival of the New Year in Osaka

Toka Ebisu is way more popular in Osaka and Kyoto than in Tokyo. This could be because historically the samurai under the Tokugawa shoguns thought of themselves as the highest level caste in Edo era Japanese society. This was followed by farmers. Then, somewhere near the bottom, because slaves, sex workers, actors, and people who handled dead things like butchers, tanners, and funerary workers were also considered the bottom, were merchants because they were supposedly just involved in parasitical money ventures without doing anything productive themselves (according to the samurai of that period). And Osaka was their capital, or at least free place where they had more power than the Shogunate, felt safe and built a place for themselves. So it is only natural that Ebisu Toka, a day for Deity of Commerce, should be a massive and super fun festival in this area.

Please look at the references in English to find out about all the fun activities going on in Osaka on that day! They are way too many to write down here!

References

In English
https://www.japan.travel/en/spot/34/
https://www.insidekyoto.com/toka-ebisu
https://www.jnto.go.jp/ph/spot-activity/kansai/osaka/toka-ebisu-festival/
In Japanese
https://kotobank.jp/word/十日戎-581799
https://www.travel.co.jp/guide/article/4377/
https://www.tooka-ebisu.or.jp/newyear/specialguide/

Photo thanks to Japan.travel by JNTO





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