Japanese Halloween? What is the meaning of Moon-Viewing Thieves (お月見泥棒)?



Japanese Halloween?

Speaking of moon-gazing or Ostukimi(お月見), there is another interesting event called “moon-viewing thieves.” (お月見泥棒:OTSUMIKI DOROBO)

Yup, it is a thief.

It sounds absolutely interesting, doesn’t it?


To be honest with you, I didn’t know about this event because I’ve never seen in my home city.


When I heard it first time, I thought of a moon stealer.

And thought of mean, bad people who attack Otsukimi events (Japanese moon festival) and destroy the fun time.


None of above is right.


It is actually Japanese version of Halloween!!


Just like Canadian or American Halloween, children would go people’s houses and get treats and snacks.


moon with stars


Where Can We See Moon-Viewing Thieves?




Moon-viewing thieves (お月見泥棒) are taking place some areas in:


Fukushima Prefecture (福島県)

Fukuoka Prefecture (福岡県)

Ibaraki Prefecture (茨城県)

Chiba Prefecture (千葉県)

Tokyo (only in Tama/多摩 area)

Yamanashi Prefecture (山梨県)

Aichi Prefecture (愛知県)

Mie Prefecture (三重県)

Nara Prefecture (奈良県)

Oita Prefecture (大分県)

Kagoshima Prefecture (鹿児島県)

Okinawa Prefecture (沖縄県)


Moon-viewing thieves are still very popular in Nisshin (日進) area in Aichi (愛知) Prefecture.

It is located next to Nagoya (名古屋).

A bunch of children come out on the street and get treats and snacks from neighbourhood.


Just like North American Halloween, adults prepare treats for children.

Some leave a treat box in front of their houses and children are allowed to take a couple of snacks from it.

Others distribute treats when children arrive their houses.


If I were a small child, I would love moon-viewing thieves!


I think it is important to preserve this kind of tradition.


Hope those children that live moon-viewing thieves area will have a lot of fun this year!



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