The Imperial Household Agency announces planned processions of horse-drawn carriages as part of the Ceremony of the Presentation of Credentials as appropriate.
※ When watching a procession of horse-drawn carriages, your cooperation with the following points is requested.
(1) Waiting on the pavements for the procession may inconvenience to other pedestrians, so please do not congregate on the pavements, but view the procession from the Imperial Palace Outer Gardens (in the vicinity of Nijubashi Bridge).
(2) Please keep quiet and do not obstruct the procession or cause any kind of inconvenience to its passage. In particular, in order to ensure the safety of the procession, please refrain from any actions that could alarm the horses, such as using flash photography or running alongside the procession.
※ If the weather is stormy on the day, the procession may use limousines instead of horse-dawn carriages.
During the Ceremony of the Presentation of Credentials, ceremonial horse-drawn carriages welcome newly appointed ambassadors to Japan and convey them from the Meiji Seimei Kan Building to the Imperial Palace South Porch.
Only a few countries worldwide, among them the United Kingdom and Spain, use horse-drawn carriages to welcome newly appointed ambassadors. In Japan, many ambassadors express a preference for the carriages over a conventional motorcade, attesting to the success of the ceremony in promoting international goodwill.
The ceremonial carriages used to welcome ambassadors are drawn by two horses and known as zagyoshiki. Most were manufactured from the end of the Meiji period to the beginning of the Showa period and have artistic value.
Processions of horse-drawn carriages are also used in Imperial Household ceremonies such as the accession of the Emperor to the throne and weddings of members of the Imperial Family.