Get up close and personal with authentic Japanese culture from the Edo period. Don’t miss this rare chance to see beautiful courtesans parade in ceremonial kimonos, as well as other colorful characters!
Originating from the 17th century, this parade is a once-in-a-lifetime chance to catch a glimpse (or an eyeful!) of these Edo-era courtesans.
Visitors may confuse these beautiful women for geisha, but they’re actually oiran, a high-class sex worker of the Edo period. Oiran wore flashy kimono, elaborate headdresses and higher heeled geta to attract attention and customers, whereas geisha wore more reserved styles. Geishas were used to entertain in tea houses with music and dance while customers waited for oiran. Eventually, geishas became significantly more popular to hire when they started offering additional services since their time was cheaper. Oiran officially became extinct after the anti-prostitution law of 1956.
There will be 2 meeting points, depending on which itinerary you choose to take. Please choose course A if you’re a 1st time visitor to Asakusa or if you want to see Sensoji temple with a professional tour guide!
For those who take course A, we’ll meet up in the morning at 9am sharp at the Asakusa Culture Tourist Information Center.
We’ll then make our way up Nakamise Shopping Street to Sensoji Temple, Westward on Denpoin Street, and eventually to Marugoto Nippon store to pick up the remaining guests of course B at 10:30.
Altogether, we’ll discover the old Rokku entertainment district and make several short stops along the way to the parade street. We encourage you to try the neighboring food stalls serving up local dishes later. Because of the crowds, we can’t take our entire group for food in this area.
The Oiran parade starts at 1pm, and again at 2:45pm, so don’t worry if you miss the first one! There’s plenty of time to watch additional entertainment and listen in on our guides’ local tales while waiting for the second.
The festival itself lasts from 10 to 4pm and features kabuki performances, traditional dances, stage shows, and a flea market. These various parades feature costumed actors in animal masks, guards for the oiran, musicians and children.
(Note: There is a Starbucks near the Culture Information Center, as well as an onigiri shop called "Misojyu" that offers cheap onigiri+miso breakfast sets as early as 8:30am! Just don't be late~)
(1.5h) **Course A**
Meeting point: Asakusa Culture Tourist Information Center @9am
Nakamise Shopping street and Sensoji Temple
(3h) **Course B** (pick up other guests in front of Marugoto Nippon @10:30am)
Asakusa Engei Hall
Broadway shopping street
The Ryounkaku Tower Memorial
Hanayashiki Amusement Park
Edo Crafts Museum (special event: wood carving demonstrations 11am-4pm) @11:30
Walk to Ichiyozakura Komatsubashi-dori for parade @12:45
Tour ends at the parade venue @1:30, but your guide will stay around til 2pm to answer questions if you have any!
After the tour ends, you can either enjoy the rest of the festival on your own, or walk back South towards the temple to explore Sensoji’s side streets. :)
Event subject to be postponed to the following day due to bad weather
Pricing is as follows for Course A:
EARLY BIRD SPECIAL: March 21-March 31
For individuals: 7,500 yen/person
For 2 people: 6,500 yen/person
For 3+ people: 5,500 yen/person
NORMAL PRICE: April 1 - 12
For individuals: 9,000 yen/person
For 2 people: 8,000 yen/person
For 3+ people: 7,000 yen/person
Course B is 1,000 yen less than Course A, but why pass up a tour of Sensoji Temple for only 1,000 yen more??
TO BOOK, please go to https://www.shitamachitpro.com/oiran