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Bon Odori Cebu 2014

Friday, August 08, 2014 Charmie Gi 2 Comments Category : , , , , , , , , ,

"When I see you through my eyes, I think that we are different.
When I see you through my heart, I know we are the same."
-Doe Zantamata-

Philippines by now is already a diverse nation. Go out, look at your surroundings and you can see other nationalities roaming around our place. Tourists, expats, exchange students, language learners, investors, businessmen and many more. This situation is actually helping our country's tourism industry and economy. If utilized well, this might even help to improve our way of living. Don't get this wrong for it is not about dependency but rather about cooperation. Our world can reach a long way if we just go hand in hand. And one way to show our utmost gratitude, Filipinos participate and honor special events of different nationalities here in our country.

One of the countries which shares a cordial relationship with Philippines is Japan. In fact, July has been declared as the Philippines-Japan Friendship Month. A month later and Japan celebrates one of their important festivals. For the first time, they brought Bon Odori to Cebu. It's a 2-day celebration (August 8-9) wherein we, Cebuanos, can experience and learn Japan's culture in our own land.

Bon Odori is quite similar to our All Saint's Day which we celebrate in November. Japanese also honor the spirit of their ancestors but in the heat of their summer season. This usually starts on the 15th of August, the 15th of July or on the 15th day of the 7th lunar month depending on the region. The highlight of this festival is the dancing of their Bon Dance around a yagura.

Since it's a Friday, my friends and I decided to go on the opening day. Hope you enjoy the pictures as we enjoyed the event. ^^

The former is an NPO and the latter is an NGO which are based in Cebu.

For the purpose of cultural exchange, Filipinos also showcased the famous Sinulog dance.

Daredemo Hero kids were enjoying the show.

The audience was serenaded by Aisaku.
A pure Japanese who sings Tagalog and Japanese oldies and favorites.

Us girls. ^^

We wanted to try a lot of Japanese foods but mistakenly went there with full stomachs. :(
So, we just got these! Grilled Sausage and Japanese Pizza from QQEnglish (ESL Tutorial Center) / Qbay (Japanese Restaurant). We also got some mango flavored shaved ice from Daredemo Hero's stall.

A pose with the Yukata girls. Kawaii desu ne.
I'm actually thinking of wearing Yukata in the future too. HAHA.

Some interesting stuff we came across through one of the stalls.

A high wooden scaffold made especially for the festival which people circle around while dancing the Bon Odori dance.  It is also where the musicians play the taiko drums. It is said that the dance was to amuse returning ancestral spirits and to send them back on their way.

  Many people enjoyed taking pictures here before the dance started.

Bon Odori Dance.

Mikoshi (Portable Shrine).
Kids carried these portable shrines while all the people shouted "Wasshoi!".
Wasshoi is an expression used to encourage the people who carry the Mikoshi.

 Fireworks Display. ♥

It was really a fun night. We got to experience a bit of Japan's culture and know more about it. We enjoyed the Bon Odori Dance and the chanting of "Wasshoi!" and of course, the fireworks display which ended the night. If they continue to have this tradition every year, I hope to see more colorful lanterns and stuff that will make people feel like they are really in the land of the rising sun.

Japan, let me experience Bon Odori in your land. :)

Till next post, lovies. Ciao!



  1. I regret I didn't come (T_T) . It seems so much fun!


    1. Visited your kawaii site and guess you're really in love with Japan. It was fun but I too have regrets for not coming on the 2nd day :c Let's just look forward to the next Japanese festival in our place ^^

      Thanks for dropping by :*