The view of Hanamikoji Street, known for its old, Edo vibe with its archaic Japanese architectures, is a popular landmark in Gion, Kyoto. (Image via Japan Hoppers)
Tired with tourist's ill behavior, Gion forbids tourist photographyKyoto is known for its traditional building and construction. For that, many tourists, coming from the corners of the globe, want to experience the old, Edo-like environment.
However, with the explosion of tourists in recent years, Kyoto found another problem. It seems difficult for the prefecture to maintain the order around the area and properly educate these foreign visitors. When in Rome, do as the Romans do. In 2017, Kyoto released a guideline on how to behave in the city and the punishment should it be broken. However, the problems linger still.
Now, one of the sub-districts, Gion, could not hold it any longer. Starting from 25 October, the local association consisting of local residents and shop owners have imposed a photography restriction near the Hanamikoji street and alleys around the area. Hanamikoji Street is a famous tourist attraction, famous for its buildings and stone pavements.
This restriction took the form of a sign to let the visitors know. If one caught breaking the restriction, he/she will be fined ¥10,000.
The urge for a ban comes after bad tourist behavior when it comes to taking pictures of geisha and maiko in the area. Foreign tourists took pictures of geisha and maiko without permission, going as far as chasing them down the alley. Even worse, some tugged their kimono.
Japan’s tourism has been growing exponentially for recent years. By that, the problem of ill-mannered tourists also emerges. For example, in Kamakura, they posted a sign for the tourist to mind their manners to not walk while eating. Kamakura is famous for its giant Buddha statue.