Kamo River Turtle Stepping Stones – Kyoto, Japan - Atlas Obscura

Kamo River Turtle Stepping Stones

These turtle-shaped concrete stepping stones provide a unique river crossing in central Kyoto.  


The Kamo River runs through the center of the Japanese city of Kyoto and this line of large stone turtles has been constructed to form an interesting crossing point.

They can be seen by those who stroll along the popular riverbank area, with many onlookers stopping to gaze at locals hopping from stone to stone. The 83 stepping stones were created in 1992 from concrete and have since become a firm local favorite. 

The idea was proposed by Shigenori Yoshimi, a member of the Kyoto Prefectural Public Works Department. The stones were designed to provide protection to the river bed from the current while creating a spot for people to play in the river. 

Visitors to the river may see many animal species including fish such as the pale chub (zacco platypus), or birds including the great cormorant and the grey-headed lapwing.


In partnership with KAYAK

Plan Your Trip

From Around the Web