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Cormorant Fishing on the Uji River

Summer tradition in Uji, just like Heian aristocrats!

My aunt lives near the Byodoin Monastery, a World Heritage site. Being trilingual as she is, many foreign friends of hers visit her seeking free lodging in Kyoto, a popular nearby tourist spot. She takes them to Byodoin, of course, but on the way back what they tell her is, "We don't want to visit any more shrines and temples." The last and regular resort of my bewildered aunt is always Ukai (Cormorant Fishing). The Cormorant Fishing on the Uji River has a long history. In the Heian Period (794-1192) aristocrats were already enjoying watching Cormorant Fishing on the river from elegant boats decorated especially for them. Three cormorant fishing masters including two very pretty and young female masters have been carrying on the tradition on the Uji River. This unique fishing style is held from mid-June to late Sep. For further information please contact the Uji City Tourist Association (0774-23-3334).

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