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Arashiyama Backroads: Private Half Day Walking Tour

Arashiyama Backroads: Private Half Day Walking Tour
Cultural & Theme Tours > Cultural Tours > Cultural Tour
$83.56
Duration: 5 hours
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Description

Spend half a day walking through the backroads of Arashiyama. The thickly forested mountains and traditional houses lining winding roads will bring on the feeling of stepping into a small countryside village - all without leaving the Kyoto city limits. Along the way, you'll discover hidden temples, strange and unique Buddhist statues, an ancient graveyard, a lush moss garden, local handicraft shops, try some matcha tea, and finish up at the world famous Sagano bamboo forest. Your guide is a fellow foreigner, so you'll enjoy the benefit of being able to ask about what it's like to live in Japan as a foreigner and get honest answers with no language barrier. This is THE tour for explorers (and photographers!) who want to see the slower side of Kyoto and walk through the rural backroads that most tourists never venture into. Tour fee includes all entrance costs and the taxi ride from your hotel with your guide into the hills of Arashiyama where this walk begins.

Your guide will meet you at your hotel or lodging and you'll head to Arashiyama together via private taxi. Most tourists only visit the popular river area and bamboo forest, but you'll be starting your tour up in the foothills at one of Kyoto's best secret temples. Enjoy 1200 handcarved stone statues, and learn how the musician monk at this forest temple blends art and spirituality in a unique way. A truly special location that most visitors never experience due to its remote location.

From there, begin a 2.8km walk (all downhill) through some of Kyoto's best rural scenery. Along the way, you'll enter at an ancient cemetery with thousands of intricately arranged headstones, explore a private villa's maze-like hedgerows and pathways, visit a haiku poet's traditional farmhouse, marvel at Kyoto's best moss garden, and pass through a preserved village street with 400 year old thatched roof houses. This route takes you down the quiet backroads of Arashiyama with a rural countryside setting that is hard to imagine still exists within the Kyoto city limits.

This tour is perfect for nature lovers, photographers (pros and Instagrammers alike), travelers seeking to spend some time away from crowds, as well as anyone hoping to shop for traditional Kyoto handicrafts and gifts. You'll pass a variety of shops that sell locally made bamboo goods, folkart, paper, pottery, incense, fans, and other specialty items. This tour has a tendency to become the "I never thought I'd do so much shopping today" tour!

Upon arrival in central Arashiyama, you'll be treated to  cup of matcha tea and handmade sweets in a garden teahouse before walking through the famous Sagano bamboo forest. From there, your guide will give you a choice of seeing one more fantastic temple garden or continuing on through the second half of the bamboo grove. Up to you!

At the ending location on downtown Arashiyama's main street, your guide can direct you where to get a late lunch, do some shopping, or see additional sightseeing spots nearby like the famous Iwatayama Monkey Park. You will also be shown how to return into the city on your own via train or taxi. This tour usually runs about 4.5 to 5 hours, but may vary depending on your hotel location and pace.

Throughout the tour, your guide is at your disposal to answer all sorts of questions. With a guide who is a fellow foreigner, this is your chance to ask all the stuff that you can't ask Japanese guides! We love discussions about what it's like to live here as a foreigner and can help you better understand the realities of Japanese culture, both traditional and modern, without any language barrier. Additionally, your guide is happy to offer suggestions on sightseeing and dining for the rest of your time in Kyoto.

Spend half a day walking through the backroads of Arashiyama. The thickly forested mountains and traditional houses lining winding roads will bring on the feeling of stepping into a small countryside village - all without leaving the Kyoto city limits. Along the way, you'll discover hidden temples, strange and unique Buddhist statues, an ancient graveyard, a lush moss garden, local handicraft shops, try some matcha tea, and finish up at the world famous Sagano bamboo forest. Your guide is a fellow foreigner, so you'll enjoy the benefit of being able to ask about what it's like to live in Japan as a foreigner and get honest answers with no language barrier. This is THE tour for explorers (and photographers!) who want to see the slower side of Kyoto and walk through the rural backroads that most tourists never venture into. Tour fee includes all entrance costs and the taxi ride from your hotel with your guide into the hills of Arashiyama where this walk begins.