Mitarashi Festival at Shimogamo Shrine

August 3, 2018

This summer's heat is brutal. For sure, this is the severest one in my history of living in Kyoto.


Amid this hot weather, Ashitsuke-shinji (足つけ神事), an annual event of Shimogao shrine (下賀茂神社), was conducted. The event is held around Doyo no ushi no hi (土用の丑の日, dog days of summer) every year, and the shrine becomes very crowded with visitors purifying their body and soul by soaking their feet in the Mitarashi pond (御手洗池) on the premises. They are all somewhat complaining about the weather in a good animated way, and still eager to make wishes.


The origin of the festival is from the noblemen's custom in the Heian (平安) period. At that time, people believed that soaking their feet in clean water was effective for warding off evil and misfortune. It's the event which represents the mid summer in Kyoto.


Akane Kibune

Kyoto Expert Certification 1st Grade



3 mins. on foot from Shimogamo Jinja Mae, Kyoto city bus







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