Megi-jima Island, which is a part of Setonaikai National Park and about 20 minutes ferry ride from Takamatsu Harbor, is often called by its nickname of Onigashima (Ogres' Island), which derives from a long cave located in the hillside on the island. Since it was discovered in 1930, it has been associated with the ogres’ den in the story of Momotaro.
From the platform above the cave, you can command a panoramic view of the Seto islands including Oshima, Kabuto-jima and Yoroi-jima as well as the attractive fishing village at the foot of the hill, where houses have high stone walls called “ote” to provide protection from cold wind called “Otoshi” in winter.
In Takamatsu City Onigashima Oninoyakata Museum at Megi port, many objects concerning ogres are exhibited.
The Okayama Momotaro Festival is held annually for three days in August in Okayama. Originally, there were various festivals called Okayama Momotaro Festival, Okayama Summer Festival, Uraja-odori parade, and Nouryou Firework Display, each held separately. All of these festivals came together as the Okayama Momotaro Festival in 2001 (Heisei 13).
The highlight of the first day is the Nouryou Firework Display. 5,000 fireworks are set off toward the night sky to gorgeously celebrate the opening of the festival.
Later, the Uraja-odori parade features dancers wearing bizarre makeup called 'ura-geshou'. The motif for the ura-geshou is a man named Ura from mainland Asia, who later became king of the ancient Kibi kingdom (part of today's Okayama Prefecture). There is also a Family Festa, which can be enjoyed by the whole family. There are many events held over the three summer days of the festival in Okayama.
Regardless of age and sex, anyone can join in the Uraja-odori dance, with its distinctive rhythm and bizarre makeup, that has its own unique traditional Japanese style. The three-day festival creates an atmosphere of joyfulness over the summer nights.
The Kibitsu Shrine is located in Kibitsu, Okayama Prefecture. It is a guardian shrine for the Bichuu area. The shrine is dedicated to Prince Kibitsuhiko, the model for the famous Japanese folk tale about Momotaro (the Peach Boy).
By the Heian period, the shrine had become known as the Sanbi Ichinomiya ('Shrine Uniting the Three States of Kibitsu') and has been deeply revered by many as a sacred site to pray for success in commerce and for longevity.
The adjoining double gables of the roof of the main building is a characteristic style of the Kibitsu area, and is known as 'Kibitsu zukuri' or 'hiyoku-iromiya zukuri'. Because of this distinctive feature, the shrine is designated as a National Treasure.
There is a 400m-long corridor connecting the main building to the sub shrine, and the view from beside the South Zuijin Gate is overwhelmingly beautiful. The gate is designated a Cultural Treasure by the Prefecture. The hydrangea, peony, and plum gardens inside the shrine precincts are popular among visitors as well. The shrine displays the colorful beauty and contrasts of all four seasons, entertaining the eyes of all who visit.
Yagui Shrine is located at Takatsuka, Okayama City, near the junction of the Chisui and Ashimori rivers. The four rocks of varying sizes in the shrine precincts are related to the folk tale of Momotaro, the Peach Boy.
According to the legend of the Kibitsu Shrine, these rocks are located at the point where two arrows struck each other and fell to the ground. The legend relates that one arrow was shot by Prince Kibitsuhiko, the model for Momotaro, and the other by Onra, the model for the ogre with whom Momotaro fought.
According to the legend of Demon Castle and the shrine's legend, these huge rocks were thrown here by Onra, while nearby bamboos grew from the site where Prince Kibitsuhiko's arrows fell.
Local people love these four granite rocks and the old legends relating to them.