The Infinite Zenith

Where insights on anime, games, academia and life dare to converge

Kyoto region: Home of K-On!

K-On! is set in an unnamed town that derives many elements from Kyoto. While a class trip to Kyoto appears to obfuscate the precise location further, no major landmarks from Kyoto are shown to emphasise that the anime itself occurs in a distinct location. Nonetheless, various locations within the anime are directly derived from their real-world locations. Some examples are given below: it becomes impressive of the extent to which the animated locations resemble their real-world counterparts.

Anime location Real-world equivalent

Aside from various points that reflect on their real-world counterparts, there are other points of interest that exist within the anime.

  • This is one of the streets where Yui runs along on her first day of high school.

  • For completeness’ sake, I’ve included several other points that Yui passes through on her way to school.

  • Yet another one of the locations Yui passes: a cafe. I wager that since K-On! aired in Japan, business has been booming there.

  • For the curiously minded, such gates do exist in Japan. In North America, the gates lack the under-hanging chains

  • Jeugia is the name of the musical instrument store where Yui bought her guitar and is located closest to the Sanjou-Keihan Station of Subway Touzai Line and Sanjou Station of Keihan Outou Line train stations.

  • This is Plaza Shuugakuin, an indoor mall where Yui, Mio, Ritsu, Tsumugi and Nodoka do their Christmas shopping.

  • During the course of the third years’ trip to Kyoto, their class stays at the Hanazono Kaikan. This is the front entrance where the students gather for a free-exploration day.

  • This is another angle of the Hanazono Kaikan by night.

  • Yui and Azusa perform for a local festival at this park. The nearest train stations are Ichijouji Station and Chayama Station of the Eizan Main Line.

  • Yamanaka-sensei and Christina meet up at this family restaurant. They were followed here by the HTT girls, whose curiosity to determine whether or not Yamanaka had a boyfriend.

  • This is a convenience store near the  Uji Station of the JR Nara Line. I am tempted to assume that the producers included nearby locations solely as Easter eggs for viewers.

  •  Uji Station itself: this is where HTT and Yamanaka-sensei assemble to catch a tour bus bound for a regional music summer festival.

These locations are located within an hour of KyoAni’s studios, accounting for why the animators were able to replicate the region’s details with such precision. Half of these locations are also rather mundane and are only considered noteworthy on the virtue of being featured in the anime, so I’d like to thank my contact for providing these exceptionally detailed comparisons.

2 responses to “Kyoto region: Home of K-On!

  1. Kirara3500 May 8, 2015 at 07:42

    Hello. It is so interesting article. I went Kyoto and Shugakuin area a month ago and make nice memories. I met and talking master of antique shop at Plaza Shugakuin mall (left of photo) sometime and he shown goods of K-on on window. I’m happy to seen articles of Air and Love, Chunibyo and other Delusions.


  2. Pingback: Tamako Market | Oji-san No Seishin 叔父の精神

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