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Updated by Rozy James on Aug 22, 2016
Headline for Japanese Bicycle Riding Rules in Kyoto: Enjoy Safe Sightseeing
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Japanese Bicycle Riding Rules in Kyoto: Enjoy Safe Sightseeing

Exploring and discovering the many allures of Kyoto on your own bicycle sightseeing tour is quite a thrill. The laid back city is a beautiful precinct which one can enjoy via a leisurely cycle ride.


Ride your Bicycle on the Street

Remember that bicycles should be ridden on the streets and not as a hindrance on the sidewalk. There is however an exception where a sign beside the sidewalk or pavement will say 'bikes allowed' in this case it is alright to ride your bike on the pavement.


Ride on the Left Side

In Kyoto when riding your bike you should follow the right lane. This is in order to keep close to the car street. The same rule applies when cycling on the sidewalk as well.


Give Priority to Pedestrians

When you are riding your bike along the sidewalk make sure to give priority to the pedestrians. This is mandatory and courteous. Always stick to the car street. In the case of very crowded sidewalks make sure you stop and let the pedestrians go first and if the sidewalk is extremely busy you must dismount from the cycle and push it along the sidewalk until a free stretch is reached.


Always Follow Traffic Safety Rules

These are the 3 main basic rules when cycling in Kyoto - no consumption of alcohol, no riding double and no riding side by side with a friend. At traffic light stops you too should follow the lights and when cycling at the night your cycle light must be switched on. Kyoto is an extremely picturesque and courteous town and riding your bike according to the correct rules will earn you respect while ensuring your tour is safe and relaxing. If you are intent on cycling around the town consider the convenience of a serviced Kyoto apartment; these are generally well laid out for at home conveniences. Choose lodging in central areas such as the tourist belt home to the Citadines Karasuma-Gojo Kyoto and you can enjoy a hassle free cycle ride to the many attractions.


Children on a Bike

If an adult or anyone above the age of sixteen is riding a cycle carrying a child below the age of six in a child seat, that child must wear a helmet. Children from thirteen years or less deciding to ride their own bicycle must also wear a helmet.


Parking a Bicycle

A cycle must always be locked when parked; make sure to avoid areas displaying a 'no parking of bikes' sign. Please note that cycles parked in this area are confiscated by Kyoto city. Only use bicycle parking areas, do not park near shops, railway stations or private houses. When visiting temples, shrines, shops etc. ask the staff there where you can park the bicycle.


Areas that Cycling is Prohibited

During certain periods it is prohibited to ride your bicycle on the pavements. In bicycle parking lots there are notices that update you on which areas to avoid and where you should push your cycle instead of riding.