Guided tour

Kyoto Cultural Walking Tour: Temples, Shrines & Gardens

Kyoto Cultural Walking Tour: Temples, Shrines & Gardens

From US$ 52.25 per person

Discover the best of Kyoto, a city packed with cultural sights and must-see locations, on this tour of the its key highlights. Stroll through corridors of torii gates, discover peaceful Zen gardens, and explore Gion, the city's historic Geisha district.

About this activity

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Covid-19 precautions
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Duration 3 hours
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Live tour guide
Private or small groups available


  • Experience the peacefulness of a Zen rock garden at the Tofukuji Temple
  • Experience daily life in a local neighbourhood
  • Walk through Kyoto’s infamous red tori gates and spot the fox statues at Fushimi Inari Shrine
  • Discover the unique Geisha culture in the historical entertainment district Gion
  • Join a carbon neutral tour, organized and led by an eco-certified tour operator
Full description

See the temples, shrines and gardens that make Kyoto Japan’s capital of culture on this unique tour of the city. Founded as the national capital more than 1,200 years ago, Kyoto originally developed as a center of aristocratic culture and is most famous for its Zen gardens and Geisha traditions. On this Kyoto tour, you'll discover some of the magic of the city through cultural explorations and local experiences. First head to one of the city’s must-see sights, the Tofukuji Temple.

Originally built in the 13th century, and famous for its traditional, yet modern, Zen garden, this is a great place to escape to a relaxed atmosphere in the city. Learn about the origin and inspiration for the garden, and what it means to the Monks who continue to live and study here. Next walk through a nice local residential neighborhood to the Fushimi Inari Shrine. Home to a seemingly endless stretch of iconic red torii gates spread across a thickly wooded mountain, this shrine is a world unto itself.

Walk through snaking corridors of red gates, made famous in the film "Memoirs of Geisha", stopping to admire the shrines and many fox statues. Major photo opportunity alert! As the sun begins to set on the Toriis, leave behind the foxes and head to Gion, famously known as Kyoto’s Geisha district. This area was the model for Memoirs of Geisha, and it comes alive with people and lights in the evening.

Stroll past the 17th-century traditional restaurants and teahouses, many of which are still exclusive establishments for Geisha entertainment, see the theaters and traditional shops, and soak up the atmosphere of this historic quarter. This iconic neighborhood makes for the ideal end to this Kyoto city tour, and is sure to leave you completely enthralled with this dynamic city.

  • English-speaking guide
  • Transportation fare
  • Entry to Tofukiji
  • Gratuities

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Meeting point

Meet your guide in front of Central post office at the North side of Kyoto station. "Chu-o yu-bin-kyo-ku"(Central Post office) is less than a min walk from the station. Please meet in front of the door closer to the convenience store "Lawson"

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Important information

What to bring

  • Comfortable shoes

Know before you go

  • This tour is organized and led by the world's largest travel B-Corp certified company. B-Corp Certification measures a company’s social and environmental impacts and responsible tourism practices
  • A child's ticket can be purchased for children between the ages of 6 and 11
  • Please note that children below the age of 6 are not permitted on this tour
  • The maximum group size is 12
Customer reviews

Overall rating

4.6 /5

based on 133 reviews

Review summary

  • Value for money
  • Service
  • Organization

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I liked the tour very much: informative, informative, without unnecessary information. An interesting route and the duration is not at all tiring. The guide gave free time for self-examination and photography. We visited such places and temples that we would not have been able to see in one day in Kyoto. Thank you very much for a wonderful tour and highly recommend!

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December 25, 2019

Highly recommended

An excellent tour that brought great context and detail to the sights and areas that we really wouldn’t have had otherwise. Julian was a great guide, happy to answer questions on anything Japan related, and I think his background of having been brought up partly in Japan and partly in the USA gave a particularly interesting insight and ability to answer questions well. The tour ends in the Gion area, which we knew, and Julian helped us easily get a bus back to the train station.

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October 3, 2019

Great tour!

Highly recommend. The tour takes you to three important places in Kyoto which give you a good view on the city especially if you have only limited time in the city. The guide is very nice, gives detailed explanations, answers all questions and is well organized. We enjoyed the day. The walking distance was moderate and not exhausting.

September 21, 2019

Product ID: 15367