Home > Kyoto Annual Events - Current Events

October Event Highlights

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

Pick Up Event

Enjoy Japanese Films with/in English!
In November, the Japan Foundation Kyoto Office will be showing a selection of classic & contemporary Japanese films with English subtitles or narrations. Entry is free and open to all. This is a great opportunity to learn more about Japan and have an entertaining time during your stay in Kyoto!

Admission: Free of charge on a first-come, first-served basis (max 200 people per program)
Venue: Event Hall, Kyoto International Community House
Time: All films begin at 14:00.
Contact: The Japan Foundation Kyoto Office: Tel: 075-762-1136 (10:00-17:00, Mon.-Fri.)

Nov. 11, from 14:00
Korin House: A Re-creation (with English narration)
Directed by Masami MURAYAMA; 1986; Sakura Motion Picture; 35 min.

Nov. 12, from 14:00
The Makioka Sisters (with English subtitles)
Directed by Kon ICHIKAWA; Based on the novel by Junichiro TANIZAKI; 1983; Toho; 140 min.

Nov. 18, from 14:00
Kamome Diner (with English subtitles)
Directed by Naoko OGIGAMI; Based on the novel by Yoko MURE; 2005; Nikkatsu; 102 min.

Kamome Diner © Kamome Company; Photo: Yoko Takahashi

Nov. 19, from 14:00
The Little House (with English subtitles)
Directed by Yoji YAMADA; Based on the novel by Kyoko NAKAJIMA; 2014; Shochiku 136 min.

The Little House © 2014 The Little House Film Partners

Until Dec. 29
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 tourist season).

Entry: 620 yen (one way); Access: JR Sagano Line, Saga Arashiyama Stn.; Sagano Kanko Tetsudo: Tel: 075-861-7444; http://www.sagano-kanko.co.jp/

Every Day
Hozugawa Kudari River Run

© Takayoshi Horiuchi (Staff for one)

The Hozugawa Kudari is 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).

Tickets: 4,100 yen; Access: An 8-min. walk from the north exit of JR Sagano Line Kameoka Stn.; Hozugawa Yusen Association: Tel: 0771-22-5846; www.hozugawakudari.jp/

Nov. 1 & 3
Kyoto Citizen Tea Party at Nijo Castle

Masters of Japan's three tea ceremony schools (Urasenke, Omotesenke and Yabunouchi) will serve matcha green tea in a stunning garden at Nijo Castle.

Tickets: 2,500 yen (two bowls of green tea, meal & entry to the castle); Open: 9:30-15:00; Access: Kyoto City Bus #9, 50, 101, get off at Nijojo-mae; Tel: 075-841-0096; www.city.kyoto. jp/bunshi/nijojo/

Oct. 30-Nov. 3
Autumn Old Book Market at Chion-ji Temple

At this old book market, organized by the Kyoto Old Book Association, about 200,000 interesting old books of all kinds are displayed and sold.

10:00-17:00; Access: Kyoto City Bus #206, get off at Hyakumanben; http://koshoken.seesaa.net/category/8767185-1.html

Oct. 30-Nov. 3
Special Autumn Opening of the Kyoto Imperial Palace

© Takayoshi Horiuchi (Staff for one)

People can enter the Imperial Palace without pre-applying during this period; No registration is required during this special period.

No entry fee; 9:00-15:30; Access: Karasuma subway line, Imadegawa Stn. or Marutamachi Stn.; Imperial Household Agency: Tel: 075-211-1211; www.kunaicho.go.jp/e-event/kyotogosho.html

Until Nov. 8
Ohara-me Festival in Ohara

In the idyllic Ohara area (northeast of Kyoto), people can try on a traditional Ohara-me (women who sold firewood from Ohara in Kyoto in the old days) costume and enjoy strolling through the village; reservation required by the day before.

No entry fee; 10:00-16:00; Access: Kyoto Bus #17, 18, get off at Ohara; Tel: 075-744-2148; http://www.kyoto-oharakankouhosyoukai.net/

Autumn Chrysanthemum Exhibition at Daikaku-ji Temple

© Takayoshi Horiuchi (Staff for one)

This popular autumn flower exhibition, in a lovely rural setting, attracts people from all over Japan; About 600 chrysanthemum flowers, in pots, are on display.

Entry: 800 yen; 9:00-16:30; Access: Kyoto City Bus #28, get off at Daikakuji; Tel: 075-871- 0071; www.daikakuji.or.jp/

Nov. 1
Inoko Festival at Go-o Shrine

© Takayoshi Horiuchi (Staff for one)

A sacred ritual will be held from 17:00; Special rice cakes called Inoko-mochi will be served.

No entry fee; 6:00-21:00; Access: Karasuma subway line, Marutamachi Stn.; Tel: 075-441-5458; www.gooujinja.or.jp/

Nov. 1-10
Gion Odori Dance Performance at Gion Kaikan

During this period, the geiko and maiko of Gion Higashi (one of Kyoto's five geiko/maiko districts) will perform their elegant dances; Performances at 13:30 and 16:00 (the show lasts about one hour).

Tickets: 4,000 yen, 4,500 yen (including matcha green tea); Access: Kyoto City Bus #100, 206, get off at Gion; Gion Higashi Kabukai: Tel: 075-561-0224; www.gionhigashi.com/

Nov. 3
Kyokusui no En at Jonan-gu Shrine

© Takayoshi Horiuchi (Staff for one)

In this traditional event, which starts at 14:00, people dressed as Heian aristocrats sit on the banks of a stream that flows through the shrine; A sake cup is released upstream and before it reaches the next person, he/she must compose a 31-syllable poem.

No entry fee; Access: Kyoto City Bus Minami #1, 2, 3 from Karasuma subway line, Takeda Stn., to Jonangu Higashi-guchi; Tel: 075-623-0846; www.jonangu.com/

Nov. 7
Ohitaki Festival at Kifune Shrine

This ancient sacred fire ritual is held to banish bad spirits; The ritual is held between 11:00 and 12:00.

No entry fee; Access: Kyoto City Bus #4, get off at Demachiyanagi-eki-mae, then take the Eizan Railways Kurama Line to Kibune-guchi Stn. and walk to Kibune village; Tel: 075-741-2016; kifunejinja.jp/

Nov. 8
Ohitaki Fire Festival at Fushimi Inari Shrine

© Takayoshi Horiuchi (Staff for one)

This important festival is held to thank the gods for this year's harvest; Over 100,000 wooden prayer sticks offered by the faithful will be burnt and prayers will be held for family prosperity; The festival starts at 13:00 in front of the main shrine hall; Kagura dance will be performed for the shrine deity from 18:00.

No entry fee; Access: JR Nara Line Inari Stn. or Keihan Fushimi Inari Stn.; Tel: 075-641-7331; inari.jp/

Nov. 8
Kanikakuni Festival at Gion Shirakawa

© Takayoshi Horiuchi (Staff for one)

Maiko and geiko come to offer flowers in front of the memorial statue of Isamu Yoshii (1886-1960), a famous poet and playwright who loved the Gion district; A special memorial service will be held at the Shirakawa Bridge during which maiko and their teachers will offer their respects.

No entry fee; From 11:00; Access:Kyoto City Bus #201, get off at Shijo Keihan-mae; Tel: 075-561-1115 (Gion Kobu Association).

Nov. 13
Urushi Lacquer Festival at Kokuzo Hourin-ji Temple

A memorial service starts at 11:00 and a kyogen theatre play will be performed; The temple's main Kokuzo Bosatsu statue is worshipped as the deity of lacquer and crafts; Many craft workers come here to pray for related business prosperity.

No entry fee; Access: Kyoto City Bus #28, get off at Arashiyama Koen; Tel: 075-862-0013; www.kokuzohourinji.com/

Nov. 23
Juzu Buddhist Rosary Ceremony at Sekizanzen-in Temple

© Takayoshi Horiuchi (Staff for one)

A memorial service for used Buddhist rosaries (juzu) starts at 10:00 in the blazing maple leaves; Special rosary bracelets will be presented for the first 1,000 visitors.

No entry fee; Access: Kyoto City Bus #5, get off at Shugakuin Rikyu-michi; Tel: 075-701-5181; www.sekizanzenin.com/

Temple & Shrine Flea Markets

Nov. 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.

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

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

Nov. 3, 21
Kyoto City Hall: A big public flea market; 10:00-16:00; In case of rain, it will be postponed to 4th to 12th.

Nov. 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; 7:00-17:00.

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

Nov. 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.

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