Araretenjin Yama of Gion Matsuri Festival

Araretenjin Yama of Gion Matsuri Festival

The information of Araretenjin Yama is presented here. Araretenjin Yama is a small-sized Yamahoko float (Kakiyama float), and its symbol is the pine tree that extends vertically to the sky. It is said that Araretenjin Yama originated in the Sengoku period (1493-1590) when a great fire broke out in Kyoto, and at that time, hail fell and the fire was extinguished, after which a statue of Tenjin was found and enshrined.

【Aburatenjin Yama Location Map & Directions】

Address: Tenjinyama-cho, Nakagyo-ku, Kyoto City, Kyoto Prefecture, Japan
Access (How to get there): Subway Shijo Station (about 8 minutes on foot), Hankyu Karasuma Station (about 6 minutes on foot)
Location: Araretenjin Yama is located on Nishikikoji-dori, about 40 meters west of the intersection of Muromachi-dori (north-south) and Nishikikoji-dori (east-west).

【Araretenjin Yama History and Brief Overview】

★It is said that the origin of Araretenjin Yama (霰天神山) is that during the great fire of the Eisho era (1504-1520) during the Sengoku period (1493-1590), hail suddenly fell and extinguished the great fire, and a statue of Tenjin that fell with the hail at that time was enshrined. The statue of Tenjin that fell with the hail measures 1 sun 2 bu (about 3.6 cm) and is enshrined in a Karahafu Kasugadukuri style shrine built on top of Araretenjin Yama. In the “Gionshaki”, which describes the names of Yamahoko floats and places in the middle of the Muromachi period (1336-1573) before the Onin War (1467-1477), it is written as “Tenjin Yama 天神山 (between Nishiki and Muromachi)”, and Araretenjin Yama is said to have already been founded before the Onin War. After that, Araretenjin Yama survived the Tenmei-no-taika (Great Fire of Tenmei) in 1788 and the Genji-no-taika (Great Fire of Genji) in 1864, both in the late Edo period (1603-1868), when many Yamahoko floats were destroyed by fire, and is also called “Hiyoketenjin Yama (fire-expelling)”. It is also called “Nishikitenjin Yama” because of its location on Nishikikoji-dori, Muromachi-dori nishi-iru.

★Sugawara no Michizane was born as the third son of the court noble Sugawara no Koreyoshi. He excelled in waka and Chinese poetry from an early age, passing the monjosho examination in 862 and becoming a monjotokugosho (excellent student) in 867. In 899, he was appointed the Sanuki-no-kami (Kagawa) and moved to Sanuki Province (Kagawa), but in 890 he returned to Kyoto as a close associate of the 59th Emperor Uda, and was later promoted to the sangi and the kugyo. Then, in 899, he was appointed as the udaijin (the right minister), but, shortly thereafter, he was demoted to Dazaifu (Fukuoka) by the informing of the sadaijin (the left minister) Fujiwara no Tokihira, and his four children were also exiled, and he died in Dazaifu (Fukuoka) in 903.
*reference・・・Araretenjin Yama website

【Features (subject to change)】

★Araretenjin Yama weighs about 0.65 tons. (2008 Data) Araretenjin Yama is marked by a pine tree stretching into the sky.
★In the center of Araretenjin Yama, a shrine with a Karahafu kasugadukuri style structure was built to enshrine the statue of Tenjin (Sugawara no Michizane), and is decorated with a red plum blossom and pine tree. A vermilion-painted corridor runs along the ranbuchi.
★The mae-kake (front) was the ketsudure depicting the story of the Iliad made in Belgium in the 16th century, but it was replaced by a replica in 2009. There is also the mae-kake (front) of Chinese embroidery with the “Taikogan Houo-zu (Taiko Rock Phoenix). The left and right do-kake (side) are the “Bai Kinkei-zu (Plum Gold Chicken)” drawings by Uemura Shoko and the “Ginkei-zu (Silver Chicken)” drawings by Uemura Atsushi, which were renewed in 1985 and 2002, respectively. In addition, the “Koji Unryu Takarazukushi-zu (Cloud Dragon)” was renewed in 2009.
★Chimaki with plum blossoms, which has the benefits of fire protection and lightning protection, ema (votive picture tablet), hand towels, charms against fire and lightning, etc. are available for purchase.

【Events (confirmation required)】

★In Former Festival Yoiyama from July 14th to July 16th, Komagata-chochin lanterns of Araretenjin Yama are lit and Gion-bayashi (Gion Matsuri music) is played in the evening.
★In Former Festival Yamahoko-Junko (Float Procession, Yamaboko Parade) on July 17th, Yamahoko floats, including Araretenjin Yama depart from Shijo-Karasuma and parade along Shijo-dori, Kawaramachi-dori, and Oike-dori.

【Araretenjin Yama of Gion Matsuri remarks】
*Events may be rescheduled or cancelled. Also, the content of the event may have changed.


  1. 錦市場(Nishiki Market)
  2. 竹林の道(Bamboo Forest Path)
  3. 嵐山