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Aug 16, 2014 - Aug 16, 2014


The Daimonji Festival, or the “Five Mountains Send-off Fire” sees five mountain-sides around the city ablaze with huge bonfires in the shape of Chinese characters and pictograms. These fires are to send off departed souls and guide them to the spirit world.


Jul 01, 2014 - Jul 31, 2014


The Gion Festival takes over the entire city for the month of July and is perhaps Japan’s most important. The climactic procession happens on the morning of July 17 when huge floats, some as tall as 25m, circle the city centre. The floats, lashed together with just rope, are displayed for several weeks and lit up at night.


May 01, 2014 - May 31, 2014


The Aoi Matsuri, or Hollyhock Festival, takes place in the month of May. Originally started in the sixth century to appease local Shinto deities, the festival features a day-long costumed procession on May 15 from the Imperial Palace to Kamigamo Shrine. Several sacred Shinto archery displays on horseback are held at Shimogamo Shrine in the days before the procession.