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Regions of Japan

Hokkaido Tohoku Hokuriku
Shinetsu
Kanto Tokai Kansai Chugoku Shikoku Kyushu Okinawa Islands SAPPORO TOKYO NAGOYA OSAKA FUKUOKA FURANO KUSHIRO AOMORI SENDAI FUKUSHIMA NIKKO HAKONE SADO TAKAYAMA KANAZAWA ISE KYOTO NARA HIROSHIMA NAGASAKI KAGOSHIMA NAHA
Hokkaido
Hokkaido
  • Hokkaido
Japan's great white north offers wild, white winters and bountiful summers—a haven for dedicated foodies, nature lovers and outdoor adventure fans seeking an adrenaline rush Japan's great white north offers wild, white winters and bountiful summers—a haven for dedicated foodies, nature lovers and outdoor adventure fans seeking an adrenaline rush
Tohoku
Tohoku
  • Aomori
  • Akita
  • Iwate
  • Yamagata
  • Miyagi
  • Fukushima
Fearsome festivals, fresh powder snow and vast fruit orchards—the rugged territory of Tohoku offers a new perspective on travel in Japan Fearsome festivals, fresh powder snow and vast fruit orchards—the rugged territory of Tohoku offers a new perspective on travel in Japan
Hokuriku Shinetsu
Hokuriku Shinetsu
  • Niigata
  • Toyama
  • Ishikawa
  • Fukui
  • Nagano
An easily accessible slice of rural Japan offering unrivaled mountainscapes and coastlines, endless outdoor adventure and amazing ocean fare An easily accessible slice of rural Japan offering unrivaled mountainscapes and coastlines, endless outdoor adventure and amazing ocean fare
Kanto
Kanto
  • Tokyo
  • Kanagawa
  • Chiba
  • Saitama
  • Ibaraki
  • Tochigi
  • Gunma
Jump from the neon glow of Tokyo to Gunma's mountain retreats, Kamakura's cultural heritage and the Ogasawara Islands' exotic wildlife Jump from the neon glow of Tokyo to Gunma's mountain retreats, Kamakura's cultural heritage and the Ogasawara Islands' exotic wildlife
Tokai
Tokai
  • Yamanashi
  • Shizuoka
  • Gifu
  • Aichi
  • Mie
Hallmark attractions such as Mt. Fuji and Takayama coexist with major cities and famous heritage in the center of Japan Hallmark attractions such as Mt. Fuji and Takayama coexist with major cities and famous heritage in the center of Japan
Kansai
Kansai
  • Kyoto
  • Osaka
  • Shiga
  • Hyogo
  • Nara
  • Wakayama
The Kansai region is one of contrasts, from the glittering lights of Osaka and Kobe to the cultural treasures of Kyoto and Nara The Kansai region is one of contrasts, from the glittering lights of Osaka and Kobe to the cultural treasures of Kyoto and Nara
Chugoku
Chugoku
  • Tottori
  • Shimane
  • Okayama
  • Hiroshima
  • Yamaguchi
Welcome to Japan's less-explored western frontier, where the weather is warmer and the pace of life is slower Welcome to Japan's less-explored western frontier, where the weather is warmer and the pace of life is slower
Shikoku
Shikoku
  • Tokushima
  • Kagawa
  • Ehime
  • Kochi
Island-hopping, cycling, soul-warming spiritual strolling and red-hot dancing—the island of Shikoku gets you up and moving Island-hopping, cycling, soul-warming spiritual strolling and red-hot dancing—the island of Shikoku gets you up and moving
Kyushu
Kyushu
  • Fukuoka
  • Saga
  • Nagasaki
  • Oita
  • Kumamoto
  • Miyazaki
  • Kagoshima
The southern island of Kyushu is home to hot springs, rugged geography, undeveloped beaches and volcanoes ranging from sleepy to smoky The southern island of Kyushu is home to hot springs, rugged geography, undeveloped beaches and volcanoes ranging from sleepy to smoky
Okinawa
Okinawa
  • Okinawa
Fly to Okinawa and discover a distinct island culture born of subtropical sun, white sand, coral, mangrove jungles and the age of the Ryukyu Kings Fly to Okinawa and discover a distinct island culture born of subtropical sun, white sand, coral, mangrove jungles and the age of the Ryukyu Kings

Festivals & Events

Jidai Matsuri (Festival of the Ages) 時代祭

Characters and colorful finery from centuries past

The Jidai Matsuri, the "Festival of the Ages," is one of Kyoto's three best-known festivals. You'll see elaborate finery from throughout Japan's history, as well as key figures from the country's past, starting with the Meiji Restoration and rewinding the clock to the beginning of the Heian period in 781.

Don't Miss

  • Meeting your favorite Japanese historical characters
  • Seeing authentic costumes rarely seen outside of a museum

How to Get There

Kyoto is a bullet train stop and is also accessible by regular train, air and highway bus.

You can reach the Jidai Matsuri parade route by train, bus, taxi, or on foot from Kyoto Station. This festival is easy to get to from almost anywhere in Kyoto. For the best view, travel to the Imperial Palace to watch the parade start.

Quick Facts

There is a band playing drums and flutes, and Imperial soldiers on the march

It takes around two hours to watch the parade pass by

The procession travels from Kyoto's Imperial Palace to Heian Jingu, which is around 4.6 kilometers away

A chance that only comes once a year

For over 100 years Kyoto has celebrated its history with an elaborate parade from the Imperial Palace to Heian Jingu. The grounds of the Imperial Palace, known in Japanese as Kyoto Gosho, fill with eager spectators waiting to watch more than 2,000 people dressed in historically accurate costumes.

Early birds can buy tickets in advance from a convenience store for priority seating and get the best view of this unique journey through Japanese history.

The Jidai Matsuri parade leaving from Kyoto Gosho

A performer on horseback at Jidai Matsuri

Walking you through Japanese history in style

Although the colorful historical characters are the most visually engaging part of the parade, the portable shrines, known as mikoshi, are the most important. They contain the spirits of Emperor Kammu and Emperor Komei. This is the only time of the year that their spirits get to leave their enshrined homes, so join them to celebrate Japan's history and traditions.

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