Home > Kyoto Annual Events - Current Events

July Event Highlights
See, touch and experience the Old Capital - What's on this month!
*Time, dates and information of events are subject to change.

July's Top-picked Events

Ukai Traditional Cormorant Fishing

© Takayoshi Horiuchi (Staff for one)

Ukai is a traditional method of catching small Japanese trout using trained birds called ''u'' (cormorant). The Usho, or ''master of cormorants'', skillfully manipulates several cormorants and lets them catch fish under the water. In Uji or Arashimaya, tourists can watch the event either from the banks of the river or get a seat on a boat.

Ukai in Arashiyama (July 1-Sept. 23)
Boat ride: 19:00 & 20:00; Adults 1,800 yen, Children (under 13) 900 yen; No show on Aug.16; arashiyama-yakatabune.com

Ukai in Uji (July 1-Sept. 30)
Boat ride: 19:00 (30 min. earlier after September 1); Adults: 2,000 yen, Children (under 13): 1,000 yen; www.kyoto-uji-kankou.or.jp

Every Day
Sagano Romantic Train Ride

© Takayoshi Horiuchi (Staff for one)

The Sagano Romantic Train route (7.3 km) runs from Saga to Kameoka along a gorgeous river gorge and passes through 8 old tunnels; No service on Wed. (except for holidays and during tourist season).

620 yen (one way); JR Sagano Line Saga Arashiyama Stn.; www.sagano-kanko.co.jp

Every Day
Hozu River Boat Ride

© Takayoshi Horiuchi (Staff for one)

On Hozu River; A river ride that goes from Kameoka to Arashiyama, Kyoto (about 16 km in 2 hours) along a stunning river gorge of rapids with wonderful mountain views; Boats depart every hour between 9:00-15:30 (the last boat departs at 15:30); *Operated irregularly on Sat., Sun., national holidays.

4,100 yen; 2,700 yen (4-12 years old); An 8-min. walk from the north exit of JR Sagano Line Kameoka Stn.; Hozugawa Yusen Association: www.hozugawakudari.jp

July 1
Mitoshiroe Ritual

At Kamigamo Shrine; During the ritual (from 10:00), farmers pray for the removal of harmful insects in their rice paddies; After the ritual, from 18:00, noh and kyogen performances by Kanze and Okura Schools are held (4,000 yen).

Kyoto City Bus #4, #46 get off at Kamigamo-jinja-mae; www.kamigamojinja.jp

July 7
Tanabata Festival

© Takayoshi Horiuchi (Staff for one)

At Shiramine Jingu Shrine; Kemari, a traditional ball-kicking game, will be played by people dressed in ancient court costumes after the ceremony from 15:00; From 16:00, girls dressed in colorful kimono will perform a group dance.

The ceremony starts at 13:30; Kyoto City Bus #9, get off at Horikawa Imadegwa; shiraminejingu.or.jp

July 7
Gagaku Music Concert

At Kyomachiya Ryokan Sakura Urushitei; After the obanzai (Kyoto-style home dishes) meal party (18:00-19:00), a special concert featuring gagaku (Japanese ancient court music) will be held from 19:00.

2,500 yen (1,500 yen for 6-12 years children); Reservation required at Tel: 075-343-0003 or E-mail: sakura@urushitei.jp

July 7 & 8
Tanabata Festival

At Kodai-ji Temple; A big, colorfully decorated bamboo tree is set in the temple precincts; After sunset, the temple will be beautifully lit up until 21:30.

600 yen; Kyoto City Bus #206, get off at Higashiyama Yasui; www.kodaiji.com

July 9
Kifune Water Festival

© Takayoshi Horiuchi (Staff for one)

At Kifune Shrine; During this ritual, prayers are offered to the Deity of Rain; Traditional tea ceremony service will be offered (3,000 yen; 10:00-12:00); Japanese traditional dance from 11:00.

From 10:00; Kyoto City Bus #4, get off at Demachiyanagi eki-mae and take Eizan Railway to Kibune-guchi Stn.; kifunejinja.jp

July 9-12
Pottery Commemorative Ceremony and Market

© Takayoshi Horiuchi (Staff for one)

At Senbon Shaka-do Temple; People offer thanks for the pottery they are using in their daily lives (ceremony is from 14:00 on the 10th); A lively pottery market is held in the temple precincts.

10:00-20:00; Kyoto City Bus #50, get off at Kamishichiken; www.daihoonji.com

July 15
Onda Festival

© Takayoshi Horiuchi (Staff for one)

At Matsuno-o Taisha Shrine; This is a long-inherited ritual to pray for a rich harvest; Three women holding paddy rice are carried on men's shoulders in a circle three times around the precinct.

Ritual starts 10:00; Kyoto City Bus #28, get off at Matsuno-o Taisha-mae; www.matsunoo.or.jp

July 15 & 22
Dance Performance by Maiko & Geiko

At Fureaikan Kyoto Museum of Traditional Crafts; Dance performance by an authentic maiko (apprentice geiko) or geiko depending on the day; 3 shows at 14:00, 14:30, 15:00 (each show lasts about 15 min.).

Free of charge; Kyoto City Bus #5, #100, get off at Okazakikoen Bijutsukan Heian Jingu-mae; kmtc.jp

July 20-29
Mitarashi Festival

© Takayoshi Horiuchi (Staff for one)

At Shimogamo Shrine; People put their feet in the cool waters of the stream running through the shrine and pray for a healthy life.

300 yen (charge for the candle); 9:00-21:00 (from5:30 on 20th); Kyoto City Bus #205, get off at Shimogamojinja-mae; www.shimogamo-jinja.or.jp

July 21 & 22
Cucumber Purification

© Takayoshi Horiuchi (Staff for one)

At Gochizan Renge-ji Temple; People write their names and ages on a cucumber; It is believed that an illness can be overcome by first rubbing the cucumber on the body and then burying it in the ground.

1,000 yen (including a prayer & cucumber); 21st: 12:00-19:00, 22nd: 6:00-18:00; Kyoto City Bus #26, get off at Omuro Ninnaji; rengezi.com

July 21 & 22
Yoimiya and Motomiya Festival

© Takayoshi Horiuchi (Staff for one)

At Fushimi Inari Taisha Shrine; On both days, Inari Shrine worshippers from all over Japan visit the shrine's headquarters to pray; At night (21st), a number of lanterns in the precinct will be lit up.

21st from 18:00, 22nd from 9:00; JR Nara line, Inari Stn. or Keihan Fushimi Inari Stn.; inari.jp

July 25
Shishigatani Pumpkin Ritual

© Takayoshi Horiuchi (Staff for one)

At Anraku-ji Temple; A ritual using pumpkin and a special public opening of the temple's treasures; Visitors are given portions of cooked pumpkin as a means to keep illness away.

500 yen; 9:00-15:00; Kyoto City Bus #5, get off at Kinrinshako-mae; anrakuji-kyoto.com

July 25
Temple Treasure Airing

At Shinnyo-do Temple; A special ceremony is held and roughly 200 of the temple's treasures are aired out and displayed to the public; Biwa (loquat) tea is served free of charge throughout the day.

500 yen; 9:00-15:00 (cancelled in case of rain); Kyoto City Bus #5, get off at Shinnyodomae; shin-nyo-do.jp

July 28
Hi-watari Fire-walking Festival

© Takayoshi Horiuchi (Staff for one)

At Tanukidani Fudo-in Temple; After the ceremony (from around 19:00), yamabushi or mountain monks will walk on fire with bare feet; The ritual is to pray for good health, and visitors can try the fire walking as well.

Kyoto City Bus #5, get off at Ichijo Sagarimatsu-cho; www.tanukidani.com

July 31
Sennichi Mairi Thousand-time Shrine Visit

© Takayoshi Horiuchi (Staff for one)

At Atago Shrine; On the night of the 31st, many people walk up Mt. Atago to visit Atago Shrine; It is believed that a shrine visit on this night is equivalent to 1,000 visits; A special ceremony at the shrine begins at 21:00.

Kyoto City Bus #28, get off at Hankyu Arashiyama-eki-mae and change to Kyoto Bus, get off at Kiyotaki; atagojinjya.jp

Temple & Shrine Flea Markets


July 1
To-ji Temple: This market is focused on antiques of all kinds; Usually not too crowded and great value all around; 7:00-16:00.

July 8, 18, 28
Toyokuni Shrine: A very small market of local products; 10:00-15:00.

July 15
Chion-ji Temple: Kyoto's biggest handicraft market; An absolutely amazing range of handmade items and incredible prices too!; 8:00-16:00.

July 21
To-ji Temple: Also known as Kobo-san, this mega temple market offers everything and is extremely popular; Go early, especially if on a weekend or a national holiday; 8:00-16:00.

July 22
Kamigamo Shrine: Handicrafts, arts, food, and more; 9:00-16:00

July 25
Kitano Tenman-gu Shrine: Also known as Tenjin-san, this super shrine market sprawls in and around this major shrine complex; 7:00-16:30.

July 28
Kyoto Okazaki Marche: Strictly selected authentic handmade goods will be sold at the open space of Tsutaya bookshop in the Okazaki area; 11:00-17:00.

NOTE: Markets shut down much earlier in autumn and winter; When the days get longer and warmer, sellers tend to stay a little longer.