Naked man festival, Japan


A stampede of men thronging the streets in nothing but skimpy thongs: It may sound like a drunken college dare, but the Naked Man Festival (Hadaka Matsuri) is in fact a venerable Japanese tradition dating back well over a thousand years.

The local men don the barely-there loin cloths known as fundoshis and congregate outside the temples in an attempt to cleanse themselves of bad luck. They do this by trying to touch one entirely naked man, who is himself fighting his way through the crowd to reach sanctuary in the temple.

The festival takes place in numerous Japanese towns – most notably in the Saidaiji, Okayama prefecture – on the third Saturday of February.

Written by - Photo by knaakle

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