Nestled at the foot of the mountainous Tamba highlands, the picturesque city of Kyoto is reminiscent of a bygone era. Narrow cobblestone laneways are lined with traditional Machiya townhouses and specialty stores, and cascading cherry blossom trees are dotted throughout the city. In order to gain an in-depth understanding of the history and culture of this beautiful city, you can join a guided tour to explore the 14 World Heritage-listed sites and over 2000 temples and shrines.
Don’t miss these Kyoto attractions
- City cycling tours
- Kinkaku-ji – Temple of the Golden Pavilion
- Cooking classes
- Fushimi Inari Shrine
- The Arashiyama Bamboo Grove
The City of Ten Thousand Shrines
To this day Kyoto remains as one of Japan's most traditional cities, with a plethora of hidden gardens and temples. Join a walking or cycling tour to uncover traditional workshops in the city’s backstreets, as well as historical gems including the Higashi-Honganji Buddhist Temple, Nijo Castle and the Kyoto Imperial Palace.
Travel to the outer edge of the city on a coach tour to visit some of Kyoto’s most popular attractions including the 8th-Century Fushimi Inari-taisha, and to wander through the vibrant arcades of shrine gates. Another must-see is the World Heritage-listed Kinkaku-ji Golden Pavilion, a gold-leaf-coated temple famous for the reflection it casts in the surrounding pond; always breathtaking whether during colourful summer days orsnow-capped winter months.
As the former capital of Japan for over 1000 years, Kyoto has a rich history and a diverse culinary culture, from the aristocratic kaiseki ryori multi-course dinners to obanzai ryori home-style cooking. Many restaurants throughout the city showcase traditional cuisine. However, you can also find many fusion restaurants in the lively Pontocho district and the famous Gion geisha district.
If you want to delve further into the culinary cuisine of Kyoto, you can attend a cooking class within a traditional townhouse where you prepare, cook and taste delicious Japanese food. You can also explore via a food market walking tour. These culinary tours guide you through the stalls of fresh produce at Nishiki Market, and let you visit quaint tea stores and sake breweries.