Koi Carp Streamers (over Shimanto River)

こいのぼりの川渡し(Koinobori no Kawawatashi)
See 500 carp streamers soaring above the Shimanto River
Every year, from April to May, around 500 colorful koi nobori carp streamers can be seen flying over the clear Shimanto River, Japan’s last free-flowing river.
Flying koi nobori is a tradition all around Japan, an important part of Children's Day celebrations, a festival held on May 5th dedicated to praying for the success and health of all children. Carp are considered auspicious symbols of courage and strength, as they swim upstream against the current.
The custom of flying these streamers above a river (rather than from a pole or rooftop) began in the Shimanto river region almost 50 years ago. A gym teacher overheard some young boys saying that as they got older, no one would fly the streamers for them anymore. The gym teacher was deeply struck by this comment. Along with other members of the community, he gathered 50 carp streamers and strung them up so they would fly above the river. This has turned into a yearly custom and popular attraction, and now around 500 koi nobori flutter in the wind to assure all children, that no matter their age, the carp will “swim” proud and strong for them every year.
Culture & Art
Address 高知県高岡郡四万十町十川 (Tokawa, Shimanto Town, Takaoka Gun, Kochi City, Kochi Prefecture, Japan)
Telephone Number 0880-28-5111
Directions●About 5 min walk from JR Tokawa Station
●About 1 hr 30 min drive from Susaki-higashi IC on Kochi Expressway
Map Code392 223 675*30

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