Your online guide to exploring Japan's hidden and lesser-known wonders!

Tsuru-no-Mai: The Crane Dance in Kushiro City, Hokkaido, and its Cultural Significance

A Brief Introduction to Tsuru-no-Mai

Tsuru-no-Mai, or the crane dance, is a traditional dance performed in Kushiro City, Hokkaido. This dance is said to have originated from the Ainu culture, the indigenous people of Hokkaido, and has been passed down from generation to generation. The dance is performed by women dressed in white from head to toe, with white paper cranes attached to their backs. The performers move gracefully across the stage, mimicking the movements of cranes and creating an ethereal atmosphere.

The Cultural Significance of Tsuru-no-Mai

Tsuru-no-Mai is more than just a beautiful dance – it holds significant cultural meaning. The crane is a symbol of longevity, happiness, and good fortune in Japan. In the Ainu culture, cranes are believed to have the power to communicate with the gods and bring blessings to the people. Furthermore, Tsuru-no-Mai is a way to honor and preserve the traditions of the Ainu people. The dance is an important part of Kushiro City’s cultural heritage and is often performed during festivals and special events.


Tsuru-no-Mai is a beautiful and meaningful dance that highlights the cultural significance of the crane in Japan and the Ainu people’s traditions. If you ever have the chance to see this dance performed, don’t miss it – it’s truly a unique and enchanting experience.
Regional Sports