Ichijodani Asakura Clan Ruins where Echizen Asakura Mantoya is taken place are historic ruins in the area that was controlled by the Asakura clan for 103 years during the Sengoku Period (1467-1590).
In Kyoto, the nation's capital at that time, a great civil war broke out. Then, many court nobles, high priests, or intellectuals moved here from the devastated Kyoto.
Thus Ichijodani became a cultural city, and it became known as "Northen Kyoto".
There are only six places in Japan that have triple designation (Special Historical Sites, Special Places of Scenic Beauty, Important Cultural Properties): in Kyoto Kinkakuji Temple, Ginkakuji Temple, Daigojisanpoin Temple; in Hiroshima Itsukushima Shrine, in Nara Heijokyo , and Ichijodani.
This lighting event at this historical site, Asakura Clan Ruins, made this its 15th year (2018) since its inception in 2004. The cups for the candles are reused unless broken or cracked. Tere are more than 15,000 candles that be lit up and lined in this Asakura Clan Ruins.
The beginning of Mantoya
The very first year of Mantoya, that area was flooded by torrential rain in July, one month before the event.
The Mantoya was in danger of not being held due to the serious damage from the flood. More than 10,000 volunteers from all over the country helped to reconstruct the site, and it was finally held 3 months later with roughly 3000 candles.
Lights to show Gratitude for the reconstruction
Mantoya, which began to pray for recovery from 2002 Fukui City’s torrential rainfall, demonstrates its gratitude for those who came to volunteer, and still continue to work together with the people in the former Asuwa area every year.
The candles are prepared 3 hours prior to the ceremony by more than 150 people pouring water into the cups, and then placing candles in the cups and later, lighting the candles.
Light from Monju mountain
At the beginning of the lighting ceremony, the sound of conch shell horns reverberates throughout the site. The chief priest of Ryo-gon-ji, the prayer temple of the Asakura family, brings “Rei-bi (the fire of Spirit)”, and begins lighting the candles in front of the Kara-mon gate one by one.
Mt. Monju, on the border between Fukui City and Sabae City, is 365m high, founded by the great Buddhist master Taicho Daishi. It is known as a mountain for worship, but it is also popular for various hiking courses among the local residents.
Lighting staff wanted!
Why not come and enjoy making your own cup with us? Lighting the way while accompanied by friends, family, or even that special someone could create some everlasting memories as well.
Since cups are reused every year, you can look forward to finding your cup for the years to come! Finding your cup from previous years may be a sign of good luck!
<Participation Fee> ※Please pay at the information desk
A candle and cup ¥500
Create your one and only cup in the world and light up a floating candle inside.
A candle, cup, Echizen Oroshi-soba, drink ¥1,000
It comes with a bowl of Oroshi (Grated daikon radish)-soba and it’s reasonable.
※The Soba noodles are homemade and cooked during Mantoya.
※The sales for the cups and candles will be used for the candles next year.
※You can take home the cups you decorate