Photo Ban In Some Kyoto Alleys

Photo ban in some Kyoto alleys

Tourists in Kyoto will no longer be able to take pictures in privately-owned alleys near one of the most photographed spots in the city. Locals say the ban has come after disrespect shown by some visitors.

An association of residents and shop owners in the Gion district imposed the ban on photography in private alleys near Hanamikoji street, effective on Friday.

The area's traditional stone pavements, restaurants and tea houses are a major tourist attraction.

But some visitors have reportedly entered private property without permission. There have been other reports of people pulling at the kimonos of geisha entertainers and maiko apprentices.

Association members put up signs informing visitors of the ban.

They also handed out leaflets urging tourists to ask for permission before taking photos of geisha and maiko.

People will be fined 10,000 yen, or roughly 100 dollars, for taking photos in the private alleys without permission.

Association chief, Mimiko Takayasu, says the ban has been imposed to preserve Gion's traditional atmosphere.