Okazaki Canal Boat Rides

9:30am – 4:30pm
¥2,000 (on the door)

There are countless ways to make the most of cherry blossom season in Kyoto — hanami (blossom viewing) picnics, strolls along the Kamogawa River, and boat rides down the Okazaki canal. The canal connects the Kamogawa with Lake Biei, just over the border in Shiga Prefecture, and is lined with hundreds of sakura trees.

What happens?

During cherry blossom season, traditional-style boats called jikkokubune depart every 15 minutes from Nanzenji Boat Pier for a 3km (25 minute) round-trip canal cruise.

The cruise starts near Kyoto City Zoo, takes you under the Keiryu Bridge that leads to Heian-jingū Shrine. It continues on past several other sights including Miyako Messe and the ROHM Theater, before it reaches the statue of Kunimichi Kitagaki — Kyoto Prefecture’s third governor. Here it turns around and goes back the way it came.

It’s too early, so there aren’t many cherry blossoms out yet. | Photo by Maria Danuco

There are lots of cherry blossom trees along this route, so it makes for a very picturesque ride — if you get the timing right.


You can purchase tickets at the pier on the day but during the peak of cherry blossom season, it is recommended to book in advance online from their official website (sales start from February 29).

Organizers may cancel events, alter schedules, or change admission requirements without notice. Always check official sites before heading to an event.

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