Home » Japanese culture » Aomori Prefecture’s Unique Customs” for Foreign Nationals Living on Misawa Base or in the Prefecture to Know

Aomori Prefecture’s Unique Customs” for Foreign Nationals Living on Misawa Base or in the Prefecture to Know

Aomori customs misawa

There are approximately 5,000 U.S. military personnel stationed at Misawa Air Base in Aomori Prefecture, and about 10,000 people, including their families, live on the base.

In addition, there are more than 5,500 foreign workers in Aomori Prefecture.

In some cases, these people experience culture shock when they are exposed to Japanese customs.

Click here to learn Japanese language with the best one-on-one Japanese tutoring lessons in Aomori, Misawa base.

In this article, we would like to explain the “unique customs of Aomori Prefecture” that foreign residents of Misawa Air Base and the prefecture should know about.

Customs unique to Aomori Prefecture

Let’s take a look at some of the customs that are unique to Aomori Prefecture.

Aomori loves festivals, such as the Nebuta Festival and the Sanja Grand Festival.

There are regions in Japan where there are many people who love festivals.

Aomori Prefecture is known as one of the most “festival-loving prefectures” in Japan, and is ranked second only to Osaka Prefecture in the “Ranking of Prefectures that seem to like festivals” released by the travel information magazine “Jaran.

The Nebuta Festival and Sanja Grand Festival are particularly famous, attracting more than 1 million visitors during the Nebuta Festival and approximately 1 million visitors during the Sanja Grand Festival.

However, these numbers are post-Corona, and both festivals had several times that many visitors before Corona.

Both festivals are not among the “Three Great Festivals of Japan,” but they are very famous in Japan. The three major festivals in Japan, by the way, are “Kanda Festival (Tokyo), Gion Festival (Kyoto), and Tenjin Festival (Osaka).”

Furthermore, cherry blossom festivals such as “Hirosaki Castle Cherry Blossom Festival” and “Towada City Spring Festival” are also held actively.

In Japan, festivals are usually held in the summer time, but in Aomori Prefecture, “autumn festivals” are also held actively.

Famous festivals include the Towada City Autumn Festival, the Sanhe Autumn Festival, and the Shichinohe Autumn Festival.

In the area where Misawa Air Base is located, “Misawa American Day” and “Misawa Air Festival” are also held.

It is not known why people like festivals so much, but one theory is that Aomori Prefecture has a lot of snowfall, and people tend to stay indoors during the winter months and have less fun, so they want to make merry at festivals from spring to fall after the snow melts.

However, there are actually many festivals held in winter as well, such as the “Fire Furi Kamakura” and “Namahage” festivals.

Aomori customs

Akita Prefecture has many beautiful women.

Although it may not be a custom, many Japanese have the image that there are many beautiful women in Akita.

This is evidenced by the term “Akita Bijin” (Akita Beauty).

In fact, living in Akita, one gets the impression that there are more tall, fair-skinned beauties with a straight nose than in other prefectures.

The short hours of sunlight may be a factor in their fair skin, and the lack of humidity variation means that many of the women have beautiful skin.

Many people barbecue

Aomori people are also characterized as “barbecue lovers.

For some reason, there is a custom of barbecuing after visiting graves (there is a strong theory that it is a way of welcoming the dead), and barbecues are often held not only when visiting graves, but also in places where people gather.

Ketsumakura” is held on Omisowo (New Year’s Eve)

There is also a custom called “ketemakura,” which few people other than Akita residents know about.

This custom is to sleep with one’s buttocks as pillows on Omisoka in order of age.

It is mainly practiced in Kamikita County, Aomori Prefecture.

However, it is highly possible that quite a few people actually do this.

Many delicious Aomori local gourmet foods

Every region has its own local delicacies, but Aomori has a particularly large number of them.

Hachinohe senbei soup” is made by breaking up Nanbu senbei (crackers) and simmering them in soup.

Kuroishi yakisoba, thick flat noodles yakisoba noodles with sweet and spicy sauce, topped with soba-tsuyu (buckwheat sauce) or ramen soup.

Oma tuna, known as “black diamond.

Miso Curry Milk Ramen, a unique combination of miso, curry and milk.

Goshogawara Aged Taiyaki, which comes in a variety of flavors including red bean paste, apple, chocolate, curry, and hamburger steak.

Ichigo nimono,” a soup of sea urchin and abalone

Towada bara-yaki,” grilled beef ribs and onions with soy sauce-based sauce

Kazamaura Anglerfish Sashimi” is one of the most tasty dishes using anglerfish, which are caught in large quantities in Towada.

Ominato Navy Croquettes” made with seafood such as squid and scallops and topped with beef fat.

Hachinohe Bakudan” – rice topped with squid, salmon roe, etc. and egg yolk in the middle.

As you can see, there are so many delicious local delicacies that there is no end to the list.

Incidentally, “Inaniwa udon,” one of the three best udon in Japan, is also excellent.

It is a must-try when you come to Akita because of its firmness and smoothness. (By the way, the other three major udon are “Sanuki Udon” in Kagawa Prefecture and “Mizusawa Udon” in Gunma Prefecture.)

Aomori custom foods


In this article, we have explained “customs unique to Aomori Prefecture” that foreigners living on Misawa Air Base or in the prefecture should know about.

Aomori Prefecture is home to the Misawa Air Base, and a large number of foreigners live in the prefecture.

Therefore, there are many people who want to learn about the Japanese language and customs.

Even within the same region of Japan, each region has its own unique characteristics.

There are many customs unique to Aomori Prefecture, as listed here, so be sure to keep them in mind.

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