Iconic WA Events: Shinju Matsuri Festival

Iconic WA Events: Shinju Matsuri Festival

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The northwest coast of Western Australia is a wonderful place to be this time of year – the warm, sunny days providing the perfect escape from the dreary winter weather further south. Broome is one area of the northwest currently in the middle of peak tourist season, and it becomes an even more popular destination when the iconic Shinju Matsuri Festival takes over the town and neighbouring Cable Beach for a magical couple of weeks.

Japanese for “Festival Of The Pearl”, Shinju Matsuri originated from three cultural festivals – Japanese Obon Matsuri, Malaysian Hari Merdeka, Independence Day from British Rule in 1957, and the Chinese Hang Seng. A loving celebration of Broome’s unique pearling and multicultural history for decades, the festival just last year celebrated its 50th anniversary, and 2021 looks to be an equally special couple of weeks.

Where is it?

Shinju Matsuri features a variety of events held across Broome, Cable Beach and Gantheaume Point, around 2,2000km north of Perth, Western Australia. Driving there will take you a couple of days at least, with most people preferring the 2.5-3 hour flight from Perth.

When is it?

High season in Broome generally runs from between May and September, with Shinju Matsuri usually settling in somewhere around the second half of the season. This year the festival is running over two weeks from Sunday 22 August until Sunday 5 September.

Festival Hub

Located within Broome’s new Town Beach precinct overlooking Roebuck Bay, the Shinju Matsuri Festival Hub is where the action is all fortnight. Enjoy sunset drinks at the festival bar, catch some live local music, take part in a host of workshops and songwriter sessions, and much more. It’s the place to go when you want to properly settle into some relaxed Broome time.

Floating Lantern Matsuri

One of several truly


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