Aoi Festival is the most important annual rituals for both Shimogamo and Kamigamo Shrine. Although the festival is more commonly known as "Aoi Festival," its official name is Kamo Festival. This is one of the three Choku-sai festivals (Kamo-sai, Iwashimizu-sai, Kasuga-sai). In the medieval time, the word "festival" indicates this Kamo Festival. The ceremonies called "Roto Ritual (procession)" and "Shato Ritual" which remain elegant imperial atmosphere held according to old ritual style. Shrine priests offer hollyhock leaves (aoi) to the deity and costume of the people, carts, shrine halls and nearby buildings are decorated with the leaves as well. In May, many pre-rituals will be held at both the Kamigamo and Shimogamo shrines.
The "Roto Ritual" procession will depart from the Kyoto Imperial Palace at 10:30 on the 15th, then, slowly proceed to Kamigamo Shrine via Shimogamo Shrine.
May 15 (Mon.) Kyoto Imperial Palace (start: 10:30) - Shimogamo Shrine (arrival: 11:40, start: 14:20) - Kamigamo Shrine (arrival: 15:30) *Postponed in case of rain. *Indicated times are when the head of the procession arrive at the place. *It takes about 1 hour for the entire procession pass one location.
"Aoi Festival viewing seat ticket"
To view the Aoi Festival procession, the viewing seat which will be set in Kyoto Imperial Park & the approach of Shimogamo Shrine is recommended.
Ticket: 2,050 yen (all reserved seating with pamphlet) (TBA)
The place of reserved seating: Kyoto Imperial Park, the approach of Shimogamo Shrine
Inquiry: Kyoto City Tourism Association; Tel: 075-213-1717
- Information regarding whether the Aoi Matsuri Festival will be held will be available on this site on 6:30am on Monday, May. 15th.
- We encourage you to make use of public transportation to come to the Aoi Matsuri Festival.
- To exit from Kyoto Gyoen National Garden, walk to Karasuma-dori St. (the west side) to avoid a crowd at Sakaimachi gate (the south side) after the parade.
- Please follow the police instructions to prevent accidents.