Planning on heading over to Japan this spring? You might wanna check this out.
The Shinto Kanamara Matsuri festival looks like a normal street celebration until you see the giant pink penises.
Not just that but penis-shaped vegetables and lollipops, too.
Today, the festival is essentially a gathering of people with different phallus-shaped objects designed to raise awareness for HIV, but its roots are far darker.
Legend goes, according to the Island of Women by Basil Hall Chamberlain, that a “jealous sharp-toothed demon hid inside the vagina of a young woman the demon fell in love with and bit off penises of two young men on their wedding nights.
“After that the woman sought help from a blacksmith, who fashioned an iron phallus to break the demon’s teeth, which led to the enshrinement of the item.”
Hundreds of years later, locals now carry a 280kg, 2.5m-long wooden penis to a shrine called Tagata Jinja.
All proceeds from the event go towards HIV research.
It isn’t Japan’s only penis-loving parade. Honen Matsuri also takes to the streets in similar fashion, every spring, but in Komaki. Shinto priests play music while another 280kg, 2.5m-long wooden phallus is carried to Shinmei Sha.