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[2019 Edition] A Guide to Outdoor Music Festivals in Japan from FUJI ROCK to SUMMER SONIC and More

Numerous grand outdoor music festivals with popular artists are held across Japan every summer, and 2019 is no different! This article introduces the latest on five festivals to be held in 2019.

1. FUJI ROCK FESTIVAL

FUJI ROCK FESTIVAL, which started in 1997, is one of Japan's largest outdoor rock festivals. It is run under the theme of "music and nature coexisting," and has long been popular among music fans. The site, Naeba Ski Resort in Yuzawa-machi, Niigata Prefecture, is surrounded by beautiful mountains and is truly a wonderful place to enjoy nature and music. This is one of Japan's representative music festivals that is considered to be a key event of summer in Japan.

Access: Take the shuttle bus from JR East Echigo-Yuzawa Station.
2019 Schedule: July 26th (Fri), 27th (Sat), and 28th (Sun)

1. FUJI ROCK FESTIVAL

202 Mikuni, Yuzawa-machi, Minami Uonuma-gun, Niigata

2. ROCK IN JAPAN FESTIVAL

This is an outdoor rock festival with a lineup of bands popular in Japan of a variety of genres, such as rock, pop, and hip hop, as well as the latest J-POP stars. At this festival that showcases more than 200 artists, you can have a fabulous time from morning to night. The festival will be held for five days this year to commemorate its 20th anniversary. It is close to central Tokyo, so you can enjoy it on a day trip.

Access: Take the shuttle bus from Katsuta Station on the JR Joban Line
2019 Schedule: August 3rd (Sat), 4th (Sun), 10th (Sat), 11th (Sun/Natl. holiday), and 12th (Mon/Substitute natl. holiday)

2. ROCK IN JAPAN FESTIVAL

605-4 Aza Onuma, Mawatari, Hitachinaka-shi, Ibaraki

3. RISING SUN ROCK FESTIVAL

RISING SUN ROCK FESTIVAL (RSR) started in 1999 as Japan's first all-night outdoor rock festival. RSR is a freestyle festival unlike others, which means there are no ushers and performances are held at the same time on multiple stages, so the audience participates on their own schedule. It is also a festival where the audience can pitch tents and stay overnight. It is held in Hokkaido, so there are also opportunities to try Hokkaido's wonderful food!

Access: Take the shuttle bus from Asabu Station on the Namboku subway line.
Shuttle bus tickets must be purchased online through the homepage (Japanese only)
2019 Schedule: August 16th (Fri) and 17th (Sat)

3. RISING SUN ROCK FESTIVAL

1 Shinko Chuo, Ishikari-shi, Hokkaido

4. SUMMER SONIC

This is a famous outdoor festival affectionately referred to as "Samasoni." It is held simultaneously in the Tokyo area (Chiba) and Osaka. It is a grand summer festival with performances by major international artists, with famous artists being booked again this year. It is easy to get to as the sites are relatively close to metropolitan centers.

Access: [Tokyo Site]
Makuhari Messe, 7-minute walk from Kaihinmakuhari Station
ZOZO Marine Stadium, 15-minute walk from Kaihinmakuhari Station
[Osaka Site]
Maishima SONIC PARK, by shuttle bus (requires fare) from the Cosmosquare subway station (Nanko)
2019 Schedule:
Tokyo - August 16th (Fri), 17th (Sat), and 18th (Sun)
Osaka - August 16th (Fri), 17th (Sat), and 18th (Sun)

4. SUMMER SONIC

5. METROPOLITAN ROCK FESTIVAL

METROPOLITAN ROCK FESTIVAL is an outdoor rock festival that started in 2013 and has been recently attracting attention. Like Samasoni, it is held simultaneously in Tokyo and Osaka. It is held in May, so those who don't like the summer heat can enjoy the music comfortably. It is a festival with performances by a wide range of artists, including those popular in Japan as well as up-and-coming artists. It is a great opportunity to create wonderful memories with Japanese performing artists.

Access:
[Tokyo Site]
Shinkiba Wakasu Park, by shuttle bus from Shin-Kiba Station on the JR Keiyo Line, Tokyo Metro Yurakucho Line ,and Rinkai Fukutoshin Line
[Osaka Site]
METROCK Osaka Special Stage, by shuttle bus from Sakai Station on Nankai Main Line
2019 Schedule:
Tokyo - May 25th (Sat) and 26th (Sun)
Osaka - May 18th (Sat) and 19th (Sun)

5. METROPOLITAN ROCK FESTIVAL

Was there a music festival that caught your eye? Why not create great memories at a music festival in Japan this summer?

*Please note that the information in this article is from the time of writing or publication and may differ from the latest information.

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