Yanaginobanba-dori Street (柳馬場通)

The Yanaginobanba-dori Street is a street running north-south through Kyoto City. It runs from Marutamachi-dori Street in the north to Gojo-dori Street in the south.

It corresponds to Madenokoji of Heiankyo,


In 1589 Kyoto's or Japan's largest brothel named Nijo Yanagimachi was located around the intersection with Nijo-dori Street. It is said to have been built by order of Hideyoshi TOYOTOMI and surrounded by a row of beautiful willow trees. In 1602, however, the brothel was relocated to Rokujo due to the extension of the Nijo-jo Castle. In 1604 the vacant land after the relocation was a venue for a large-scale horse competition show or parade, which explains the origin of the name of the street.


During the Heian period large mansions were located along this street; the residence of KI no Tsurayuki was in the northern area of the street; Kawaranoin's (MINAMOTO no Toru's) mansion was in the southern area. During the middle age the mansions of the Ashikaga Shogunate family were located along the street. The second Shogunate Yoshiakira ASHIKAGA had his mansion around Nishikikoji Street, the third Shogunate Yoshimitsu ASHIKAGA around Sanjo-dori Street, and the fourth Shogunate Yoshimochi ASHIKAGA once had his around Rokkaku-dori Street. During the Edo period the area still had traces of such mansions and were occupied by Kyoto mansions of feudal domains such as Arima Domain, Ogasawara Domain, Uesugi Domain of Yonezawa, and Satake Domain of Akita.

Main Facilities along the Street

Kyoto Imperial Palace

Kyoto District Court - Marutamachi-dori Street

Kyoto Annunciation Cathedral - Ebisugawa-dori Street sagaru

Chukyo Tax Office - Nijo-dori Street sagaru

Kyoto Oikesouseikan - the north-east corner of the Oike-dori Street

Asahi Shimbun Kyoto Burea - the south-west corner of the Oike-dori Street

Kyoto YMCA - Sanjo-dori Street

Kyoto Shinkin Bank - Shijo-dori Street

Nishiki Market

[Original Japanese]