Every summer we celebrate Obon for about 3 days, which is a yearly Buddhist event for remembering our ancestors. Traditionally obon is the time each year when the spirits of our ancestors return to visit relatives. For this lanterns are hung outside the house to guide them back. We clean and water their grave stones and prayers at temples. Bon Odori dances are performed and Taiko drums playing. Each district has different dances and rituals.
At the end, floating lanterns are put in the river or lake or ocean to guide the spirits back to their world.
This is also the beginning of summer holidays. Many people plan trips around this time both domestically and abroad. If you have plans to travel around Japan in this time, expect higher prices and plan far in advance.