Circle Around Shijo Kawaramachi in Kyoto on a Rented Bicycle on this Model Course!
Being able to go around Kyoto on a rented bicycle is convenient. However, one should exercise some caution, as there are some areas that restrict bicycles. This article introduces model courses that avoid these restricted areas, so that you may tour around the busy neighborhood, Shijo Kawaramachi, without a problem.
Watch Out for Areas that Restrict Bicycles
Shijo Kawaramachi is a bustling area with plenty of tourists and shoppers. Since there are many people who come and go during the day, you may come across some areas that forbid bicycles. These places would be Kawaramachi-dori and Shijo-dori, which serve as main streets; Pontocho-dori, which is popular as a sightseeing spot; and Nishikikoji-dori, where you may find Nishiki Market. Though you cannot ride bicycles here, it is accepted to push the bicycle with your hands to pass through. As there are some areas that also restrict bicycles during the night, it is advised to check out the KYOTO CITY OFFICIAL TRAVEL GUIDE for more information.
Introducing the Model Course!
You should try to avoid the bicycle-prohibited areas when in the Shijo Kawaramachi area. This model course has been created with these areas in mind!
Recommended Shops to Rent Bicycles
First off, make a stop at Rent a cycle EMUSICA Gion Shop, which is a recommended shop for renting bicycles. This place is right next to Gion Shijo Station on the Keihan Railway, and is the most suitable shop for those looking to tour around the Shijo Kawaramachi area.
The standard plan comes at 1,000 JPY (incl. tax), which will allow you to rent a bicycle until 8:00 pm of the same day. If you pay 1,500 JPY (incl. tax), then you may use the bicycle until 10:00 am of the next day. You may also avail of the 1-week or 1-month plan, which starts at 4,000 - 6,000 JPY (incl. tax). You can also reserve online ahead of time. It is required to give a deposit of 2,000 JPY (incl. tax) per bicycle, as well as provide some self-identification, such as a passport.
It is also necessary to secure a parking space for those staying for the night or for those who would like to rent long-term. Please check ahead of time at your place of accommodation, as the shop does not rent out bicycles to those with no place to park them.
Course #1: the Popular Yasaka Shrine (Towards Gion)
When heading towards Yasaka Shrine, you should be fine as long as you avoid Shijo-dori. This course has been designed for tourists coming from Rent a cycle EMUSICA Gion Shop , who would like to visit the popular Gion Shirakawa area.
Head north on Miyagawacho-dori from Rent a cycle EMUSICA Gion Shop and head east at the intersection. Keep going until you reach Yamato Oji-dori, and then exit at Shijo-dori. Head north on Shijo-dori. Once you cross Yamato Bridge at Shirakawa River, go east on Shirakawa Minami-dori. Upon ariving at the Gion Shirakawa area, you will stumble upon a stone-paved area. As you take in this view, exit Higashi Oji-dori via Shinbashi-dori, and head south. After a while, you should reach Yasaka Shrine.
Course #2: Head North from Kawaramachi Sanjo to Kamogawa River
This course is for those heading to the Kawaramachi Sanjo area from Rent a cycle EMUSICA Gion Shop. The trick here is to avoid Kawaramachi-dori. Here, you can enjoy the atmosphere as you go along Kamogawa River.
Go north along Miyagawacho-dori, and then head west at the intersection. Once you get to Kawabata-dori, go along the crossing and head north along Kawabata-dori. It may be a bit crowded at Shijo O-hashi (Bridge), but you are ensured a smooth ride once you get past this area. Go a bit further, and you should see Sanjo O-hashi (Bridge). Cross the bridge and head towards the western side of Kamogawa River. Keep going straight and pass through Takase River, then head west. Afterwards, you should arrive at the Sanjo Kawaramachi crossroad. Note that bicycles are not allowed beyond Takase River.
Course #3: Head Towards Kawaramachi Gojo (South from Shijo Kawaramachi Area) and Meet Maiko?!
You should be alright as long as you avoid certain areas along Kawaramachi-dori on your way to Kawaramachi Gojo. Start from Rent a cycle EMUSICA Gion Shop. This course will let you get a taste of the Kyoto-like atmosphere at Miyagawacho-dori, which is where you will find the Hanamachi area that’s filled with tea houses. You may have the opportunity to meet some maiko in the evening!
First off, head south on Miyagawacho-dori and keep going straight until you get to Gojo-dori. On the way, you will come across the crossroad called “Matsubara-dori” at Miyagawacho-dori. Once you get south of Matsubara-dori, you must ride along "Shin Miyagawacho-dori". Upon arriving at Gojo-dori, head west and cross the Gojo O-hashi (Bridge) at Kamogawa River. As you go west, you should arrive at the Gojo Kawaramachi crossroad.
It is possible to tour around the area stress-free as long as you follow these courses and avoid the restricted areas for bicycles. Please check out the necessary information beforehand.
*Please note that the information in this article is from the time of writing or publication and may differ from the latest information.
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