Shijo Han'eikai Shopping Street Promotion Associations
Shijo-dori was originally the fourth avenue of the old Japanese capital of Heian-kyo built in 794. Along with the Sanjo, it was the main commercial district of the city. While its width and prominence has changed throughout the centuries, it has remained an important area in the heart of Kyoto.
As the main road that leads to the Yasaka Shrine and the famous Gion district in the eastern end, Shijo-dori is one of the busiest shopping areas in the city for both tourists and Kyoto residents alike. It is also famous for being the main street where the Gion Festival’s Yamaboko Junko float parade is held.
The Shijo Han’eikai Shopping Street is the section of Shijo-dori that lies between the Kamogawa River and Karasuma Street. This approximately 1-kilometer long street is lined with various shops and business establishments on both sides, for a total sidewalk length of 2 kilometers, making it one of the largest commercial areas in Kyoto.
The Shopping Street is a hub for food, retail, and business. It features three department stores and several financial institutions, including a megabank, a local bank, and an insurance and securities firm. There are also plenty of long-established shops that make and sell the traditional crafts and foods of Kyoto. In recent years, large stores of well-known international brands have become a common sight in the street.
In 2015, the Shopping Street underwent a major renovation wherein the roadway was narrowed and the sidewalks were widened to about twice their original width. Innovative terrace-type bus stops were also introduced, making the area even more convenient for pedestrians and shoppers.