The Kyoto City Tourism Association globally promotes the cultural and historical values of Kyoto while supporting the upkeeping of Kyoto’s traditional culture through the proceeds of its projects.
In order to sustain these efforts into the future, we will offer high-value-added experiences focusing on World Heritage temples, shrines and the Gion Matsuri Festival held in July.
The programs will feature Kyoto’s history, traditions, gastronomy and evening sightseeing. We especially hope to provide unique opportunities to visitors from overseas to deepen their understanding of the intrinsic values of Kyoto’s traditional culture and support their transmission to future generations.
1, Special experience of the festival float, Takayama, that has been revived after 200 years and luncheon with geiko / maiko dances
The brand-new wooden festival float, Takayama, has returned to the Yamahoko procession after a 196-year absence. On the day before the festival procession, the liveliest day of summer in Kyoto, you will first enjoy Kyoto cuisine and geiko/maiko dances. Then, members of the float will exclusively explain about the float and its history, before you experience a live performance of the music of Gion Festival.
】July 16(Sun), 2023
2, Private tour of the festival float, Kanko-boko, and Gion Matsuri
Private tour on board, special music, "Chochin Otoshi"-lantern fall-, of Kanko-boko and Gion Matsuri.
Private tour on board the popular Kanko-boko float of Gion Matsuri festival! You will enjoy the float ornaments with commentary and a musical performance. Enjoy summer Kyoto cuisine at "Kinobu", a long-established restaurant. After the sun goes down, you will stroll through Yamahoko-machi, which will be filled with excitement, and observe Yoiyama Chochin Otoshi, “the lantern fall,” from the special area of Kanko-boko. You can't miss the spectacular sight of the lanterns being dropped at once with the climax of the Gion Festival music. On the following day, you will watch the Yamahoko procession from the premium seats of the Gion Festival.
【Date】16(Sun),17(Mon) July, 2023
【Place】Kanko-boko, preservation office
3, Join the Kanko-boko float procession
A special participation in the Kanko-boko float parade.
Wear a kamishimo (old ceremonial attire) like a festival official and accompany the Gion Festival procession as they walk down Shijo-dori in a stately style.
】17 July(Mon), 2023
】From Kanko-boko, preservation office to Shijo Kawaramachi street
4, World Heritage To-ji Temple: Private viewing of special light-up with dinner
Exclusively enjoy the special light-up at the UNESCO World Heritage Site: To-ji Temple.
The temple’s priest will lead you on a special tour of the five-story pagoda, a National Treasure that is the tallest wooden pagoda in Japan, and the Buddhist sculptures placed in a three-dimensional mandala by Kobo-daishi Kukai, one of the most prominent priests in the history of Japan. You will experience copying the manuscript of a Buddhist sutra in the Shoin, which is normally closed to the public, and enjoy dinner at Kyakuden, the temple’s official reception hall, where Kyo-kaiseki cuisine by the restaurant Tankuma Kitamise will be served.
】14 July(Fri), 2023
5, World Heritage Shimogamo-jinja Shrine: Special visit and performance of classical court music and dance with lunch
Special Visit at the UNESCO World Heritage Shimogamo-jinja Shrine, one of the oldest shrines in Kyoto with two National Treasures and many Important Cultural Properties. After praying for travel safety, you will visit "Kawai-jinja shrine, the deity of beauty with the shrine’s priest as your special guide. The tour also includes a demonstration of how to wear junihitoe, a traditional court costume from the Heian period (794-1185), and a classical court dance performance. Lunch at Shimogamosaryo, a ryotei restaurant established in 1856, is included.
】12 August(Sat) , 2023
6, World Heritage Nishi-Hongwan-ji Temple: Enjoy traditional theatre, noh, and National Treasures with early dinner
The UNESCO World Heritage Site,"Nishi-Hongwan-ji" Temple, is a large temple with many architectural masterpieces registerd as National Treasures or Important Cultural Properties. The gorgeous paintings, sculptures and other cultural assets were part of the "Momoyama Culture," one of Japan’s golden ages of art about 400 years ago. These treasures are usually closed to the public, but will be open on this special occasion with special guidance by the temple’s priest. The room with the highest prominence in the Shoin building, a National Treasure, is the 203-tatami-mat Ko-no-Ma, which was used when the head priest met visitors in stately receptions. The rooms also have a noh stages in front of them, buil for the head priest to watch noh plays with his guests. This time, you will have an exceptional opportunity to enjoy Japanese culture by watching a noh performance from the majestic room with commentaries on the noh stage. After noh, you will also enjoy a performance of gagaku, court music, and an eary dinner of traditional Buddhist vegetarian cuisine, shojin ryori.
【Date】12 July(Wed) , 2023