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Discover the stunning Zen gardens, colorful temples and ancient shrines of Kyoto on this 3.5-hour, small-group walking tour that’s limited to just 12 participants. Experience the elegant architecture and sublime religious monuments of this historic Japanese city, once the imperial capital, as you join a guide on visits to the Gion Geisha district, Tofukuji Temple and more. This small-group Kyoto experience also includes snacks and all entrance fees.


  • 3.5-hour cultural walking tour of Kyoto
  • Explore the Geisha district of Gion
  • Experience the peace of a Zen rock garden at the Tokufuji temple
  • Gain insight into Japan's history and culture
  • Small-group tour with a maximum of 12 people ensures a personalized experience
  • Walk through Kyoto's infamous tori gates and spot the fox statues at the Fushimi Inari Shrine

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What You Can Expect

Half Day Small-Group Kyoto Cultural Tour

Fushimi Inari Shrine

Journey back in time to ancient Japan as you admire the Geishas, Zen gardens and colorful temples of Kyoto, with this small-group walking tour, limited to just 12 people. This personalized exploration of Kyoto, a now-modern city that is also the historic heart of Japanese culture, is the perfect introduction to this famous Japanese city’s many centuries of tradition.

Start your exploration by meeting your guide at 2pm at Kyoto station. Begin your visit to the city’s many attractions with a stop at Tofukuji Temple, a lovely 13th century Zen temple famous as one of five great religious buildings of Kyoto. Make sure to check out the wealth of idyllic gardens located on the temple grounds of this still-operational monastery.

Continue next to Fushimi Inari Shrine, a sacred religious site situated on the outskirts of the city on a densely-forested hillside. Admire the shrine’s brilliant-red sacred gates, or torii, which you may recognize from the film Memoirs of a Geisha, and make sure to check out the site’s many smaller monuments and its fox statue.

Finish your day in Kyoto’s Gion District, renowned for the many geishas that populate its streets. Wander among the area’s traditional tea houses and eateries, and keep your eyes peeled for sightings of these elegantly-dressed women, clothed in the traditional Japanese kimono.

Customer Reviews

Erika D

5 star rating: Highly Recommended February 2017

This was such a great tour! Our tour guide was funny and informed us of so much history. We arrived in Gion right when the Geishas were heading to work so it was a perfect time to bump into them. Would definitely recommend it!

Matthew M

5 star rating: Highly Recommended January 2017

The tour guide was very knowledgeable and helpful. The three main parts of the tour sample important aspects of Kyoto culture. Bear in mind, you'll need a good pair of walking shoes for this tour.

linda p

5 star rating: Highly Recommended December 2016

The tour was great. Walking the back streets with a local is far more enjoyable then sitting on a bus. Easy walking and relaxed guide.

Monique A

5 star rating: Highly Recommended December 2016

This was an excellent tour to end my trip in Kyoto. Being able to walk and take the train from each site was a great way to really learn the city and walk through non-tourist neighborhoods. The Tokufuji Temple and Fushimi Inari Shrine was amazing sites and walking through Gion at night was magical.

Sikastiara W

5 star rating: Highly Recommended December 2016

Really enjoy our brief tour in Kyoto, the guide was very nice, funny, and informative.
The small group made it easier to manage.

Svetlana B

5 star rating: Highly Recommended November 2016

Very interesting! I did this on my first day and it really helped to plan the rest of the trip from the guide's recommendations and what I heard from fellow group members. The true value of having a guide I recognised when we ended up in the same area I visited by myself just a few hours before - on my own I missed a whole awesome shrine Fushimi Inary - i.e. an elephant in the room!, an opportunity to sample local snacks and a whole lot of very interesting history and modern day facts that I got on this tour. I am definitely doing guided walking tours from now on. Paul, the guide was great, native English speaker, he answered a lot of our questions about challenges of living in Japan for a westerner. Very very informative and enjoyable. Highly recommend.

Lutgadis Aso M

5 star rating: Highly Recommended November 2016

The Guide Ms. Lulu was Very Expert and Nice

Marie-Therese D

5 star rating: Highly Recommended November 2016

Very interesting temple and shrine . Particularly we learn more in details these 2 religions.

Caitlin R

5 star rating: Highly Recommended November 2016

This tour was so fantastic! I'm so glad I was able to do it. Our guide, Lulu, was so helpful and knowledgeable and so easy to chat and get along with. It felt like we had a mate taking us around, rather than a guide just doing their job. You could really feel her passion for Kyoto and it made the tour so much more fulfilling for us. It was only a short tour, roughly 4 hours, but within that time we covered all the sites in Kyoto I wanted to see and even spot some professional Geisha at Gion! I had to travel a far distance to do this tour as I was staying in Okayama, not Kyoto itself, but I would happily do it all over again for a Viator tour in Kyoto. This tour was a fantastic way to get to know the city of Kyoto in a short amount of time. Highly, highly recommend!!

Deo C

5 star rating: Highly Recommended November 2016

Great tour with Lulu, a wonderful guide. Brought us to some parts of Kyoto that aren and #39;t usually included in the full day tours. The small group size allowed us to be more forthcoming with any questions about the sights and the beautiful culture of Kyoto.

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