Sign Up
Newsletter Signup
Free Fodor's Newsletter

Subscribe today for weekly travel inspiration, tips, and special offers.

Passport: Your weekly travel wrap-up
Today's Departure: Your daily dose of travel inspiration

Kyoto Sights

Kamigamo Jinja (Kamigamo Shrine)

  • 339 Motoyama Map It
  • Kita-ku
  • Religious Building/Site/Shrine

Updated 09/20/2013

Fodor's Review

One of Kyoto's oldest shrines, Kamigamo Jinja is a terrific example of rich Heian architecture. With charming bridges, sand sculptures, and vermilion gateways, Kamigamo Jinja was built in the 8th century by the Kamo family and has always been associated with Kamo Wakeikazuchi, a god of thunder, rain, and fertility. Now the shrine is famous for its annual horse race—held on May 5—and its hollyhock festival, which started in the 6th century when people thought that the Kamigamo deities were angry at being neglected. Held on May 15, it includes 500 people in Heian period costumes processing on horseback or in ox-drawn carriages. On June 30, a purification ritual takes place in which throngs of people cast paper effigies into the river beneath the flickering glare of charcoal braziers. The canal street that leads up to the shrine has many machiya (elongated town houses), some of which are more than 400 years old. To get to the shrine, take Bus 9 north Kamigamojinja-mae or Kamigamo Misono-bashi. Or take the subway north to Kitayama Station, from which the shrine is 20 minutes on foot northwest.

Sight Information


339 Motoyama, Kamigamo, Kyōto, 603-8047, Japan

Map It



Sight Details:

  • Free
  • Daily 9–4

Updated 09/20/2013


Map View

Map of

What's Nearby

  • Restaurants
  • Sights
  • Hotels

See all sights in Kyoto

Add Your Own Review

When did you go?

Minimum 200 character count

How many stars would you give?




Don't Miss



No Thanks

Love To Travel?

Get FREE e-mail communications from Fodor's Travel, covering must-see travel destinations, expert trip planning advice, and travel inspiration to fuel your passion.

How we use your email

Thank You

Now sit back, relax, and check your inbox to start planning your next travel adventure.

Please tell us more about the type of travel you're interested in. Check all that apply.