Believe it or not, goldfish scooping (金魚すくい, 金魚掬い Kingyo-sukui) is a national sport in Japan. Although, while national, it should be noted that it’s mostly done in the prefecture of Nara, in which it is famous. Visit Yamatokoriyama City for events.
There are lots of cool souvenirs here too.
Editorial Review: 😍
This is fun! Even with sluggish fish in a tank low on oxygen, it’s tough. But a tank full of fresh, full oxygenated goldfish is ridiculously challenging! Don’t compare the fun goldfish stalls at festivals to competitive scooping; they’re in entirely different leagues. Visit one of the practice centers for competitors and you’ll find that the game quickly becomes addictive.
(Editor’s Note: I actually competed in the National Championships of Goldfish Scooping in Nara, alongside my girlfriend at the time, who was once ranked #8. It’s not easy to gain entry to the event, you need residence in Nara or to have won some competitions, I believe. But, there were a few foreigners there, and the event is good fun. It’s even televised. You won’t believe how many fish these experts can get with a thin sheet of rice paper!)