Home
Back

The Nagasaki Kunchi (長崎くんち) is the festival of Suwa Shrine, held annually in Nagasaki on October 7-9. The festival has been celebrated for about 400 years and incorporates different aspects of Chinese and Dutch cultures, which have played a role in the city's history. The festival's name is believed to come from ku-nichi ("9th day"), the ninth day of the ninth month of the lunar calendar.

The festival's highlights are the dance and show performances by groups representing Nagasaki's various city districts. Each district (odori-cho), participates only once every seven years, so this festival remains fresh to even the regular viewer.

About five to seven groups perform each year, presenting traditional Japanese dances, Chinese influenced dragon dances or performances involving large floats, many of which are shaped like ships. While some performances are calm and peaceful, others get wild and hectic.

Performances are held at four main venues with paid seating and/or standing areas in the morning and evening of October 7 and in the mornings of October 8 and 9. The four main stages are Suwa Shrine, Otabisho, Yasaka Shrine and Chuo Koen.

Unfortunately, it is virtually impossible for the average foreign tourist to purchase tickets for paid seating because they sell out quickly several weeks before the event through sales channels that require Japanese language skills. However, at some of the main venues, it is possible to take a glimpse at the performances without a ticket, but these areas tend to get very crowded, and people arrive early to capture the best spots.

Performances are also staged at a few other locations across the city, for which no tickets are available and people can watch freely. Among them is the Kamome Hiroba plaza in front of Nagasaki Station, where most groups have appearances on some of the festival days (in 2023 mainly on October 7).

It is also possible to follow the floats and dancers as they walk through the city's districts and pay visits to supporting shops and households during the rest of the day. Festival schedules in Japanese and English are available at tourist information desks and hotels.

Getting there and around

Hotels around Nagasaki

Top rated in Nagasaki
Budget:
    • Nagasaki Kagamiya
      Budget-friendly
      Nagasaki Kagamiya offers dorm beds and private Japanese rooms, a 5-minute walk from Hotarujaya Tram Station. It features a garden and a cosy shared lounge with free WiFi and a free-use internet pc. Ladies’ kimono rentals are available. Private rooms have a tatami (woven-straw) floor, on which guests sleep in traditional futon bedding. Shared dormitory rooms come with bunk beds. Toilets and bathrooms are shared.
      View on Booking.com
      9.2Booking.com
    • Hilton Nagasaki
      Luxury
      Located 400 metres from Nagasaki Station, Hilton Nagasaki offers 5-star accommodation in Nagasaki and features a fitness centre, a restaurant and a bar. Featuring a spa and wellness centre, the hotel is close to several noted attractions, around 1.1 km from Fukusaiji Temple and around 800 metres from 26 Martyrs Museum. The property is non-smoking and is set 1.4 km from Nagasaki Museum of History. Guests at the hotel can enjoy a buffet breakfast. Languages spoken at the reception include English and Japanese. Nagasaki Atomic Bomb Museum is 2.8 km from Hilton Nagasaki, while Peace Park is 3.4 km away. The nearest airport is Nagasaki Airport, 39 km from the accommodation.
      View on Booking.com
      8.9Booking.com
    • Dormy Inn Premium Nagasaki Ekimae
      Luxury
      Dormy Inn Premium Nagasaki Ekimae is set in Nagasaki, 3 km from Nagasaki Atomic Bomb Museum and 3.6 km from Peace Park. With a restaurant, the 4-star hotel has air-conditioned rooms with free WiFi. Private parking is available on site. At the hotel, every room is equipped with a desk and a flat-screen TV. At Dormy Inn Premium Nagasaki Ekimae the rooms are equipped with bed linen and towels. The accommodation provides a range of facilities such as a spa and wellness centre including a sauna. Languages spoken at the reception include English and Japanese. Popular points of interest near Dormy Inn Premium Nagasaki Ekimae include Nagasaki Station, Nagasaki Museum of History and Fukusaiji Temple. The nearest airport is Nagasaki Airport, 38 km from the hotel.
      View on Booking.com
      8.8Booking.com
    • i + Land Nagasaki
      Luxury
      Renovated in April 2018, i + Land Nagasaki is 18.5 km or a 40-minute drive from Nagasaki Station. A hot spring bath, sauna, garden and kids area are available for guests. The property provides a 24-hour front desk. An Asian breakfast is served daily at the property. Guests can make use of the sauna. Cycling is among the activities that guests can enjoy near the resort. Nagasaki Museum of History is 11 km from i + Land Nagasaki, while Nagasaki Atomic Bomb Museum is 11 km from the property. Nagasaki Airport is 27 km away.
      View on Booking.com
      8.8Booking.com
    • ROUTE - Cafe and Petit Hostel
      Budget-friendly
      ROUTE - Cafe and Petit Hostel is located in Nagasaki, within 3.1 km of Nagasaki Atomic Bomb Museum and 3.7 km of Peace Park. This 2-star hostel offers a shared kitchen, luggage storage space and free WiFi. The property is non-smoking and is set 300 metres from Nagasaki Station. All rooms are fitted with a kettle, while some rooms come with a kitchen with a stovetop. At the hostel all rooms are equipped with bed linen and towels. The area is popular for cycling, and bike hire is available at ROUTE - Cafe and Petit Hostel. Popular points of interest near the accommodation include Nagasaki Museum of History, 26 Martyrs Museum and Fukusaiji Temple. The nearest airport is Nagasaki Airport, 39 km from ROUTE - Cafe and Petit Hostel.
      View on Booking.com
      8.7Booking.com
    • Garden Terrace Nagasaki Hotel & Resort
      Luxury
      Located in Mount Inasa, boasting skyline view of Nagasaki city, Garden Terrace Nagasaki Hotel & Resort in Nagasaki has a number of amenities including a seasonal outdoor swimming pool and a bar. With free WiFi, this hotel offers free shuttle service and a 24-hour front desk. Nagasaki Station is a 10-minute drive away, while the property is a 15-minute drive from Nagasaki Atomic Bomb Museum. All air-conditioned units at the hotel come with a flat-screen TV with cable channels and Blu-ray player, a coffee machine and a fridge. All rooms has an ocean view with a terrace. The private bathroom with includes a bathrobe, hairdryer and free toiletries. This hotel offers guests a relaxing experience with on-site spa services at "SPA RICH". This hotel offers a Japanese-style cuisine and tempura restaurant "Akizuki", French restaurant "Restaurant Forest", Sushi restaurant "Tenku" and Teppanyaki-grill restaurant "Chikusai". Guests can choose from Japanese-style or Western-style breakfast every morning at this hotel. Popular points of interest near Garden Terrace Nagasaki include a 15-minute drive to Peace Park and 20-minute drive to Glover Garden.
      View on Booking.com
      8.7Booking.com
    • hotel H2 TRIP&BUSINESS NAGASAKI
      Mid-range
      Hotel H2 TRIP&BUSINESS NAGASAKI features a shared lounge, terrace, a restaurant and bar in Nagasaki. Among the facilities at this property are a 24-hour front desk and luggage storage space, along with free WiFi throughout the property. The property is non-smoking and is located 1.3 km from Nagasaki Museum of History. The hotel will provide guests with air-conditioned rooms offering a desk, a kettle, a fridge, a microwave, a safety deposit box, a flat-screen TV and a private bathroom with a bidet. At hotel H2 TRIP&BUSINESS NAGASAKI each room comes with bed linen and towels. A buffet breakfast is available daily at the accommodation. Popular points of interest near hotel H2 TRIP&BUSINESS NAGASAKI include Nagasaki Station, Oura Catholic Church and Glover Garden. The nearest airport is Nagasaki Airport, 38 km from the hotel.
      View on Booking.com
      8.6Booking.com
    • GRAND BASE Nagasaki Chukagai
      Mid-range
      Located 1.7 km from Nagasaki Station, 1.7 km from Nagasaki Museum of History and 4.2 km from Nagasaki Atomic Bomb Museum, GRAND BASE Nagasaki Chukagai provides accommodation situated in Nagasaki. With free WiFi, this 3-star aparthotel offers full-day security and private check-in and check-out. The aparthotel features family rooms. Accommodation is fitted with air conditioning, a fully equipped kitchen with a dining area, a flat-screen TV and a private bathroom with bidet, slippers and a hair dryer. A microwave, a fridge and kitchenware are also provided, as well as a kettle. The units include a desk. Popular points of interest near the aparthotel include Oura Catholic Church, Glover Garden and Minato Park. The nearest airport is Nagasaki Airport, 38 km from GRAND BASE Nagasaki Chukagai.
      View on Booking.com
      8.6Booking.com
    • THE GLOBAL VIEW Nagasaki
      Luxury
      Featuring massage services, 3 restaurants and a concierge, THE GLOBAL VIEW Nagasaki is situated right outside Takaramachi Tram Station, which is the 2nd station from Nagasaki Station. WiFi is accessible in all areas of the hotel and rooms include a private bathroom and a flat-screen TV. Guests at THE GLOBAL VIEW Nagasaki stay in contemporary rooms with a fridge and safe with complimentary green and black teas. The private bathroom has a bathtub and toiletries, while pajamas are provided. JR Nagasaki Train Station is an 8-minute walk away. Guests can also take a sight-seeing bus from the front side of this hotel. Nagasaki Peace Park and Urakami Cathedral are 10-minutes away via car, while Nagasaki Airport is a 50-minute ride away on the express bus service. The Kitchen boasts 15th floor views of Nagasaki City and serves a sumptuous Japanese and Western breakfast buffet comprised from over 40 different dishes. Coffee and snacks are served at Cafe de Bijoux. Please note that renovation of Fifth floor is going on from 10:00 to 17:00 daily and some rooms may be affected by noise.
      View on Booking.com
      8.5Booking.com
    • Candeo Hotels Nagasaki Shinchi Chinatown
      Luxury
      Candeo Hotels Nagasaki Shinchi Chinatown is located in Nagasaki, within 4 km of Nagasaki Atomic Bomb Museum and 4.6 km of Peace Park. Featuring a restaurant, the 4-star hotel has air-conditioned rooms with free WiFi, each with a private bathroom. The property is non-smoking and is set 1.5 km from Nagasaki Station. The units in the hotel are equipped with a flat-screen TV. At Candeo Hotels Nagasaki Shinchi Chinatown all rooms are fitted with bed linen and towels. The accommodation offers a range of wellness facilities including a sauna, a hot tub and a spa centre. Speaking English and Japanese, staff are always on hand to help at the 24-hour front desk. Popular points of interest near Candeo Hotels Nagasaki Shinchi Chinatown include Nagasaki Museum of History, Oura Catholic Church and Glover Garden. The nearest airport is Nagasaki Airport, 38 km from the hotel.
      View on Booking.com
      8.5Booking.com