Enjoy the natural cool breeze on “Kawadoko” of Kyoto Kisen.

Enjoy the natural cool breeze on “Kawadoko” of Kyoto Kisen.

When temperature rises between May and September, “Kawadoko”, a Japanese style floor is set above or near the river in Kyoto and Osaka for restaurants to serve meals.  Kawadoko is one of the common traditions in the summer season.  This article will introduce you to the Kawadoko of Kyoto Kifune, which uses the cool natural river breeze of headstream of Kamogawa river.

The Kawadoko tradition of Kyoto Kifune is said to have started in the Taisho era, where tea and food were served to merchants cooling off by the river.  Its original style of using folding stools has been past on to today. It is enticing to sit so close to the water, almost close enough to put your bare feet in the river from your seat. Even under the burning summer sun, the temperature is usually 10℃ cooler than central Kyoto, and cool wind blowing from the waterfall and sound of water rapping against the rock brings you a cool sensation

Of the Kyoto Kifune Kawadoko, “Beniya” is known for being one of the largest capacity Kawadoko with 200 seats.  Kawadoko, with cool breeze flowing through kifune is nothing similar to the cool air from air conditioning.   Cuisine served also incorporates the blessings of nature, with sweetfish in season and local vegetables served in Kyoto kaiseki style.  “Summer Kawadoko Kaiseki ”(7,800 JPY), a limited menu served only in May, June, and September, is a course menu with grilled sweetfish caught at Kifune.  In addition to the Kaiseki meal, Kawadoko set menu and eel hitsumabushi, as well as sukiyaki, and Chinese soft-shell turtle hot pot, are also available.

Also at “Kifune Onsen Suigen-no-Mori Tenzan no Yu”, you can enjoy hot spring together with Kawadoko.  Here, chairs are provided, which was never seen in the Kawadoko of Kifune, to enjoy the cool breeze as you appreciate the waterfall and green mountain range up close.  Grilled sweetfish, and ingredients from Kyoto are served in Japanese cuisine style. 

You can also enjoy the atmosphere of Kawadoko in small groups at an individual style Kawadoko available at “Kifune Chaya”.  KIifune also provides various Kawadoko such as “Ugenta”, serving grilled sweetfish with great pairing of original craft beer.  Why not check out the cool breeze when visiting Kyoto?


京都貴船 川床料理旅館 貴船べにや(Kyoto Kisen Kawadoko Cuisine Ryokan  Kifune Beniya )


貴船温泉 水源の森 天山之湯(Kifune Onsen Suigen-no-Mori Tenzan no Yu )


貴船茶屋(Kifune Chaya )




Yunosuke Kamiki

A concierge for visiting Japan. He visits every corner of Japan to discover unique charms of various regions.

He is the editor chief of a multi-language web-magazine targeting foreign tourist visiting Japan. He is crisscrossing the nation relentlessly to dig up so many yet-to-be-discovered charms and beauties of various region, of landscape, food culture and manufacturing.
His biggest joy is to invite tourists who came from overseas to together enjoy special Japanese sake he loves and seasonal food he coordinates.

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