CultureWalking in Kimono

Are you interested in wearing kimono and walking around town in Japan? Th ere are many towns in Japan whose atmosphere is suitable for kimono. Strolling around traditional towns dressed in kimono will let you enjoy a special “Japanese” feeling!

What is Kimono?1

Kimono is one of the traditional costumes of Japan. Though today people usually wear Western clothes, not a few people wear kimono at tea ceremonies, first visits to shrines and temples of the New Year, festivals, and other traditional occasions. Recently more and more young people have been going to fi reworks festivals in summer wearing cotton kimono (yukata).

What is Kimono?2

Kimono is classifi ed depending on materials and patterns, and people wear an appropriate one considering the time, place, and occasion. Generally, lined kimono (awase) is worn from October to May, and unlined kimono (hitoe) is worn in June and September. In July and August, thin kimono (usumono) and yukata are worn. If you wear one with seasonal design, the design should be ahead of the actual season; if the kimono has a particular flower pattern, it’s best to wear it from a little earlier than when the flower blooms to just before it gets in full bloom.

When you casually want to wear kimono and walk in town, using a rental service is recommended. To be dressed in kimono, tabi socks, an obi band, Japanese sandals (zori) and other items are additionally needed. As rental service shops usually provide all necessary things, you can visit one without anything. The number of shops providing services in foreign languages has been increasing, so you can get and wear a kimono without a lot of eff ort or anxiety. For those who are not used to wearing zori, putting an adhesive bandage between the first and second toes could alleviate any discomfort. You may have other concerns including how to use a toilet, etc. Ask about whatever concerns you to the shop’s staff !

Walking in Kimono1

Hida City (Gifu) Hida Furukawa is considered to be a good and peaceful place close to tourist-famous Takayama City. The town is dotted with white wall buildings and wooden merchant’s houses. About 1,000 koi fish swim in the Seto River. Kimono suits the quiet atmosphere of the town.

Kitsuki City (Oita) Kitsuki is a castle town often called “Little Kyoto.”Those who wear kimono can enter public tourist cultural facilities and can be given discounts at some restaurants and shops.

Walking in Kimono2

Kinosaki Onsen (Hyogo) Th e hot spring town has seven public baths (sotoyu) and also some foot baths. If you stay at a ryokan, youcan choose a yukata to your liking. The town is encourages walking around in yukata, and you can enjoy a walk even in the evening as well as daytime.

Kyoto City (Kyoto) Th ere are many rental service shops in Kyoto. If you wear kimono and show “Kyoto KIMONO Passport,” which you can get at Kyoto Tourist Information Center (Kyo Navi), major stations and other places in Kyoto, you can receive a variety ofspecial services.

Asakusa (Tokyo) Nakamise, Senso-ji Temple, rickshaws …. Walking around Asakusa with its traditional atmosphere while wearing kimono will allow you to have a memorable experience of time travel.

Cruise on Tokyo Bay during summer ! Some boat services will off er you a discount fare if you wear yukata.

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