Japan - Visitor Restrictions in Kyoto
Japan - Visitor Restrictions in Kyoto


Visitor Restrictions in Kyoto


Since Japan reopened its borders post-COVID-19, it has seen a surge in tourism, with over 25 million visitors in 2023. To address overcrowding and misconduct, new measures include restrictions in Kyoto’s Gion district and on Mount Fuji climbs.

Kyoto to restrict tourists from entering areas of the Gion district

Gion, a renowned historic district in Kyoto, will restrict tourist access to its private streets starting April due to complaints of misbehavior by residents. The district is celebrated for its traditional teahouses where geisha entertain guests.

While the announcement is not yet officially confirmed, we obtained a map outlining the tentative restrictions on certain roads. Blue lines indicate public roads unaffected by restrictions, while red lines denote private roads subject to resident and local enforcement discretion. This means that we can still conduct tours in the Gion area, but these private roads will be off limit and entering into these areas can result in a fine of around 10,000. (ca. USD 68)

Note that this is technically not an official map and more roads may be added as the local authorities and residents see fit.

It’s important to highlight that the prohibition will only affect specific private streets in Gion. Visitors can still explore public thoroughfares to access renowned tourist spots like the ancient Yasaka Shrine and picturesque Tatsumi Bridge.

Mount Fuji to Introduce Entry Fee and Daily Climber Limit

While not entirely prohibiting tourists, Mount Fuji, a UNESCO World Heritage site, will enforce a daily cap of 4,000 visitors and a fee of 2,000 yen (approximately US$13.50) per climber starting July 1, 2024.

In recent years, over 400,000 individuals have reached the summit of Mount Fuji during the two-month late summer period, averaging approximately 7,000 climbers daily. This number excludes those who trek to lower elevations, with the largest base station, Subaru, hosting 4 million visitors in the summer of 2023. This surge has led to congestion and waste issues. To address this, visitor limits and fees will be enforced, with funds allocated for safety measures and environmental protection. 

Meanwhile, Japan is expanding visa options for digital nomads from 49 countries, including the US. Once additional information regarding its progression becomes available, we will provide updates accordingly.

Japan - Visitor Restrictions in Kyoto
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