The festival is designed around the theme of "wishes". It gives magical displays of bamboo and light, where visitors can enjoy the tradition of Tanabata in true Kyoto style. It is held at two major sites, Horikawa and Kamogawa for 10 days in early August.
The Horikawa Site offers a more romantic display such as the "Milky Way of Light," which mimics the stars that make up the celestial body and the "Yuzen Nagashi of Light," that lights up Horikawa River with a dazzling array of light and beautiful Yuzen silks. The Kamogawa on the other hand, creates an extraordinary world of eerie sound ie.g. the ‘Furinto’: a wind chime installation, and the "Walkway of Bamboo and Light," an enchanting path of illuminated bamboo.
At each site, visitors can purchase "picture postcard strips" for a small fee to write wishes and attach them to the bamboo leaves.