Summers in Kyoto can be surprisingly hot and humid. Fortunately, the old pragmatic inhabitants realized long ago that the surface of the river, with its lower air temperature and faster breeze, has significant cooling potential. With a little ingenuity, kawadoko meals by the river were born.
Also known as yuka eat, kawadoko involves setting up platforms and tables above or near the water, so people can enjoy the cool breeze while drinking and dining. Visit Kyoto between May and September, and you can experience this popular pastime in a variety of places, from Kibune to the Kamogawa River.
Kawadoko from the Kamogawa River
Dating from the Momoyama period (1583-1600), the oldest example of kawadoko eating in Kyoto is right in the heart of the city.
In fact, the famous Kamogawa River features a two-kilometer stretch of kawadoko between Nijo-dori and the Gojo Ohashi bridge. The restaurants and bars backing onto the river have outdoor dining platforms which are the perfect spot for a summer meal.
To get there, simply head to the Ponto-cho area, north of Shijo-dori. As you stroll down this narrow alley, you would never guess that the establishments with small frontages offer a view of the river and kawadoko to eat.
(You can read the rest of the article on this link. This article was first published by Team JJ on August 13, 2019. Check it out here for more in-depth and unique information about visiting Japan, including wellness, travel, cuisine and more. Find us on Instagram and on Facebook.)
Author: JJ Team