千葉県Chiba Prefectural Government

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Update:September 10, 2018

Chiba Nanohana News (April 2017)


 I.News   II. Festivals and Events    III.Exhibitions, Concerts, etc.

 I. News

 1) Recruiting 2017 CHI-BA+KUN Ambassadors


    The Chiba Prefectural Government International Affairs Division is currently looking for CHI-BA+KUN Ambassadors to help introduce and promote Chiba Prefecture through blogs, Facebook, websites, and other social media. CHI-BA+KUN Ambassadors participate in sponsored tours and proactively explore Chiba Prefecture, sharing their discoveries in their native languages.
    Applications must be received by 5:00pm on May 2, 2017. For more details about this project, and to download the application form, please refer to the link below.

URL: https://www.pref.chiba.lg.jp/kokusai/english/information/residents/ambassadors.html

 2) 23rd Chiba Cultural Architecture Award

       Chiba Prefecture’s Cultural Architecture award is given based on architectural excellence. The purpose of the award is encourage comfortable, tranquil, and rich urban development. This program began in 1993. This year marks the highest number of applicants with 98 entries. Of the 98 entries, 52 facilities including schools, stores, hospitals, and parks applied. There were also 46 applications by residential homes. The survey committee selected 9 entrants to receive awards. Three received general merits, and six entrants received awards of excellence. The highest award for excellence was not given out this year.

Award of Excellence Recipients:


  • Shin-Kashiwa Clinic (Kashiwa City)
  • Tokiwa Shrine (Funabashi City) *photo1
  • Kikkoman Areana (Nagareyama City)


  • Land and Sea, Geographic House (Choshi City)
  • Matsudo no Ie (Matsudo City) *photo2
  • Kazusakibo no Sato (Kisarazu City)

General Merits:


  • Kyonann Town Exchange Facility and Roadside Station (Kyonan Town)
  • Gyosei International Elementary School (Nagareyama City)


  • Itsumo-Hi-Nata,Itsumo-Hi-Kage House (Isumi City) *photo3




*1)Tokiwa Shrine    


*2)Matsudo no Ie


Itsumo-Hi-Kage House

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 II. Festivals and Events

  1) Dolphin watching/Choshi Ocean Research Center (Choshi City)


      Up to 30km offshore, in the Oyashio and Kuroshio currents that flow past the Choshi peninsula, dolphins and whales swim almost all year round.  Among the varieties often spotted are the short-beaked common dolphin, the bottlenose dolphin, the striped dolphin, the Pacific white-sided dolphin, the northern right whale dolphin, and Risso’s dolphin. Sometimes dolphin watchers have seen pods of up to 5,000 dolphins.

     Besides dolphins, you may also spot sunfish, sharks, flying fish, and albatrosses. Come out on a tour and enjoy the beauty of the waves and sky.

  •  Season period: April—Wednesday, May 31
  • Time: 3-4 hours
  • Boat departure times: Once a day from 10:30
  • Golden Week Holidays: Twice a day from 8:00 and 13:00
  • Admission: Adults (high school students and older) 6,500 yen; children (10 years and older) 5,000 yen, Children under 10 years of age not permitted to ride
  • Capacity: 30 people per boat (minimum of 10 people per boat), reservations needed
  • Meeting place: Choshi Ocean Research Center (Choshi Marina)
  • Meeting time: 30 min before departure
  • Facilities: Bathroom; handwashing station; a/c and heating
  • Place: 15-9 Shiomicho, Choshi City
  • Access: By bus via the Naarai/ Chiba Institute of Science Line (From Choshi Stn. Platform 5) Get off at the Chiba Institute of Science
  • Inquiries: Choshi Ocean Research Center (0479-24-8870)
  • URL: http://www.choshi-iruka-watching.co.jp/ (External link)

 2) Ayame Park at the Suigo Sawara Aquatic Botanical Garden (Katori City)


     Iris season is soon on its way and to celebrate the Suigo Sawara Aquatic Botanical Garden will be opening as Ayame (Iris) Park on Saturday, April 29. Until late June, the gorgeous colors of 1.5 million hanashobu (Japanese irises) in full bloom will stretch across the park. Within the garden, there are 400 different varieties of iris. Visitors can also cruise around on small boats called sappa boats (additional cost required). The view of the irises from the boat is a must-see! Women dressed in patterned kimono, red aprons, tabi shoes, and triangular amigasa hats operate these boats using large poles called sao, and have become a trademark of this season.
     As the different varieties of irises bloom one after another, visitors can enjoy the flowers until late June, when the late-blooming flowers blossom.

  • Address: 1837-2 Ogishima, Katori City, Chiba
  • Phone: 0478-56-0411
  • Hours: 8:00 to 18:30 during the Blood Iris Festival period. (Hours vary in other seasons.)
  • Admission fee:
    April: 200 yen for adults, 100 yen for elementary and junior high school students
    May: 600 yen for adults, 300 yen for elementary and junior high school students
    June: 700 yen for adults, 350 yen for elementary and junior high school students
  • Access: 25 minutes by shuttle bus from Sawara Station (JR Narita Line) (* Shuttle bus only operates during Iris Festival. Bus fare is 500 yen for junior high school students and older, 250 yen for elementary school students and below.)
  • Inquiries: (0478) 50-1212 (Katori City Commerce & Tourism Division)
    (0478) 56-0411 (Suigo Sawara Aquatic Botanical Gardens)

 3) Narita Taiko Drum Festival (Narita City)


        Wadaiko (Japanese drum) teams as well as traditional Japanese music and dance teams based in the Kanto Region will bring energy and excitement to Naritasan Shinshoji Temple and Naritasan Omotesando Street during this taiko festival.

        The Narita Taiko Festival is regarded as one of Japan’s greatest taiko festivals by taiko organizations, performers, and fans because of the number of performing groups, their high-quality performances, and the many unique styles that can be heard here. The festival draws over 200,000 visitors with the pairing of intense performances and the backdrop of Naritasan Shinshoji Temple’s Main Gate, making it an event like no other.

       At 10:00am on both Saturday the 15th and Sunday the 16th, all performing groups will gather in front of the Main Hall of Naritasan Shinshoji Temple for the “Sengan Hana Daiko.” The simultaneous drum show with nearly 800 performers is an unforgettable sight. Make sure you get there early to find a good spot to watch from!

       After the “Sengan Hana Daiko” performance on Saturday, the teams will split up amongst the 8 stages spread out along Omotesando Street, which is connected to Shinshoji Temple, transforming the area into one expansive stage. At 17:00 on Saturday, April 15th, the Night Drum Concert will be held amongst blazing bonfires surrounding a special stage in front of the Naritasan Shinshoji Temple Main Hall. On Sunday from 15:00-17:00, the lively “Taiko Parade” will be held along the length of Omotesando Road connecting Naritasan Shinshoji Temple and JR/Keisei Narita Station.

  • Date: Saturday, April 15, 10:00-19:00
    Sunday, April 16, 10:00-17:00
  • Place: Naritasan Shinshoji Temple & Naritasan Omotesando Street, Narita City
  • Access: By train: 10 minutes on foot to Naritasan Shinshoji Temple from Narita Station (JR Narita Line or Keisei Line)
    By car: 10 minutes to central Narita from Narita IC (Higashi-Kanto Expressway) via Natl. Route 295, then Natl. Route 51

*Please note that some parking lots may be inaccessible because of traffic restrictions.

 4) Sakura Tulip Festival (Sakura City)




       In the Edo Period, Sakura City flourished as a center of Dutch and Western studies. The Sakura Clan promoted the study of Western medicine and there came about a saying, “Nagasaki in the west, Sakura in the east.” Even today, Dutch influence can be found in Sakura City as they celebrate events like the Tulip Festival.

       This April, 600,000 tulips of 70 varieties will blossom in this picturesque plaza, which features a Dutch windmill in the background. Each year visitors come out to see the tulip field, which is one of the largest in the Kanto region. Enjoy the coming of spring with the natural beauty of Lake Imba combined with fully bloomed tulips that paint the field with vivid colors.

        The festival includes tulips for sale (10 for 500 yen), rental of Dutch traditional costumes (1,000 yen for 45 min), yakatabune cruises of Lake Imba (1,000 yen for adults, 500 yen for children), Dutch street organ performances, rent-a-cycling (500 yen; 1,000 yen for an electric bicycle), and local product sales. The costume rentals, cruises, performances, and rent-a-cycling will mainly be held on weekends. There will also be a windmill festival featuring Dutch food, trying on wooden clogs, and a windmill photo exhibition on the weekend of the 15th and 16th.

  • Date: Saturday, April 1—Sunday, April 23, 9:00-16:00
  • Place: Sakura Furusato Hiroba, 2714 Usuita, Sakura City
  • Access: 10 min by shuttle bus or Sakura City loop bus from Keisei Sakura Station north exit
  • Inquiries: Sakura City Tourism Association (043-486-6000)
  • URL: http://www.city.sakura.lg.jp/0000000042.html

 5) 23rd Mitsuwadai Cherry Blossom Festival (Chiba City)

       Japan’s most iconic season has finally made it to Chiba Prefecture. The cherry blossom season is a time for food, fun, and relaxing under the gentle flowers. Experience the beauty of Sakura season at the 23rd Mitsuwadai Cherry Blossom Festival on Saturday, April 1st and Sunday, April 2nd. Enjoy the view as you walk the nearly 400-meter path that travels under the pink and white canopy. There will also be live music provided by the Chiba Commercial High School Wind Ensemble, a hip-hop performance, Yosakoi Dancing, a taiko drum performance, nighttime shops, a flea market, and more.

  • Date: 4/1 (Sat) – 4/2 (Sun)
  • Time: 11:00-21:00
  • Place: Between the Police Post at Mituwadai 3, Mitsuwadai and the traffic signal at the Mitsuwadai Northern Elementary School
  • Access: 2 minute walk from Mitsuwadai Station via the Chiba Monorail or Chiba Nairiku Bus
  • Online: (JPY only) http://mitsuwadai-matsuri.com

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 III. Exhibitions, Concerts, etc.

  1) Haiku Exhibit at Natural History Museum and Institute, Chiba (Chiba City)


     On display now until Sunday, May 21st, the Natural History Museum and Institute, Chiba is showcasing a special Haiku exhibit. Children wrote Haiku poems about what they experienced while walking through the facility’s ecological park under the guidance of one of the museum’s researchers. The exhibit is included in museum admission and features 971 works by children from second to sixth grade. With themes including bugs, birds, foliage, and more, it is a unique opportunity to get a sense for nature through the eyes of children.

There will also be several talks by museum researchers in April.
Date: Sunday, 4/16 and 4/23
Time: Two sessions each day, 11:00-11:30 and 14:30-15:00




     Outside of these special events, the museum has a diverse set of items on display for guests to enjoy. Being that the museum is also a research institute, many of the displays are made by the researchers that work there. The large variety of insect, marine, and plant specimens on display gives visitors a chance to learn about the great diversity of life found in Chiba Prefecture. Learn about cannibalistic fungi, the differences between safe and poisonous mushrooms, and the organisms that make their home at the bottom of the ocean. The museum’s many exhibits also give visitors a chance to learn about the geological creation of Chiba Prefecture and the anthropological development that took place here. Experience the fun and excitement of learning something new this month at the Natural History Museum and Institute, Chiba.


  • Place: Natural History Museum and Institute, Chiba, 955-2 Aoba-cho, Chuo-ku, Chiba City
  • Museum Admission: 300 yen; 150 yen for high school and university students; FREE for junior high school students and under and seniors 65 and older
    Museum Hours: 9:00-16:30 (last admission 16:00)
    Closed: Mondays (or Tuesdays if a National Holiday falls on a Monday)
  • Access:
    From Chiba Station east exit, take the bus from platform 7 bound for Chiba University Hospital (“Chiba daigaku byoin”) or “Minami-yahagi,” or take the bus from platform 6 bound for “Kawado-miyakoen.” Ride for about 15 min and get off at the Natural History Museum and Institute (“Chuo hakubutsukan”). From there it is about 7 min walk to the museum.
    From Soga Station east exit, take the bus from platform 2 bound for Chiba University Hospital (“Daigaku byoin”). Ride for about 15 min and get off at the Natural History Museum and Institute (“Chuo hakubutsukan”) and walk for about 7 min to the museum.
    The museum is about 20 min walk from Keisei Chiba-dera Station.
  • Inquiries: Natural History Museum and Institute, Chiba (043-265-3111)
  • URL: http://www.chiba-muse.or.jp/NATURAL/ (External link)

 2) Sakura Festival at Chiba’s Boso-no-Mura (Narita City)

photobousonomura      Chiba Prefectural Boso-no-Mura will celebrate Sakura Festival on April 8th (Sat) and the 9th (Sun). There will be many performances to enjoy and crafts to try underneath the beautiful canopy of the park’s nearly 300 cherry blossom trees. There will also be a special Koto Japanese Harp performances and unique street performances.

  • Date: 4/8 (Sat) – 4/9 (Sun)
  • Time: 9:00-16:30
  • Place: Chiba Prefectural Boso-no-Mura
  • Admission: General 300 yen, 150 for university and highschool students, seniors and children free, free entry for up to one aid of persons with disabilities
  • Access: By bus from the JR Narita Station on the JR Narita Line: about 20 minutes by "Ryukakuji-dai-shako". Get off at "Ryukakuji-dai-2-chome." Walk about 10 minutes. ※There are 1-2 buses going in either direction every hour.
  • Online: http://www2.chiba-muse.or.jp/www/MURA/contents/1520316673745/index.html


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