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Aoi Matsuri in Kyoto: 2014 Report

In Heian style dress they walk the streets of Kyoto

A few days ago, I attended the annual Aoi Matsuri in Kyoto City. The Kyoto Shimbun carried an article on this years Saiō-Dai Lady (59th). She is Miss Risako Ota, a sophomore at Kobe University. Ota san is the eldest daughter of Toru Ota, the fourth generation owner of the Japanese confectionery "Oimatsu." In the festival’s parade, ladies dressed in the ceremonial court robes and men in traditional costumes ride on ox carriages decorated with wisteria leaves. There are 36 horses, 4 oxen, 2 ox carriages, 1 mikoshi ,and over 500 people forming the Imperial procession. Everything in the parade is adorned with the hollyhock leaf crest, also called "aoi" – thus the name of the festival.

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Aoi Matsuri Festival 2025

Aoi Matsuri Festival 2025

Thursday - May 15th

The Aoi Matsuri is one of the oldest and most celebrated festivals in Japan. So much so, the word “Matsuri” originally referre..

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Find out more about Kamigamo Shrine.

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