Cool terrace in Kyoto summer
1. One of Kyoto’s favorite summer traditions is a cool terrace with a wooden floor called noryo-yuka. Some eating and drinking establishments near the river entertain their guests on these terraces, which resemble balconies overhanging the river. Full-scale structures that bridge the river are known as noryo-doko.
2. Summer is very hot and winter is very cold in Kyoto. Therefore, since olden times, Kyoto people have devised cool ways to lessen the intense summer heat.
3. Open from May through September, these breezy terraces can be seen in many places around Kyoto, especially near the Kamogawa River and the Kisen Jinja neighborhood. Today, you can find noryo-yuka not only at teahouses and elegant Japanese restaurants but also at Western restaurants serving Italian food and even at a coffee shop chain.
4. There are unwritten rules governing noryo-yuka hospitality — emphasizing Kyoto-style serenity and comfort, together with a strong feeling of nostalgia. Noisy music and dancing are prohibited, and a measure of sobriety is expected of guests.
5. Depending on the weather, some terraces may be open during the day, but real enjoyment of noryo-yuka begins after sunset. The area is illuminated by soft lantern light, and guests savor delicious meals while listening to the sound of the river. This is a true entertainment for mature people, so children in Kyoto long to join this magical circle of nightly entertainment.