One of Japan's largest summer festivals has started in the northern city of Aomori.The Aomori Nebuta Festival is known for its large "Nebuta" floats carrying illuminated paper lanterns depicting legendary heroes and warriors.This year's event began on Sunday evening with a parade of 14 floats. Each one is about 5 meters high and 10 meters wide.
One of them features Minamoto no Yoshitsune, a 12th-century warlord. A legend says he crossed the Tsugaru Strait between Aomori and Hokkaido prefectures.The float was created to mark the planned launch of the Hokkaido Shinkansen bullet train service next March. This will connect Aomori City with Hakodate City in Hokkaido.