This tour is designed for those who like trekking along the Kiyotaki River in autumn foliage and like visiting lesser-known temples of scenic and historic interest with moss-covered gardens located in a serene environment.
Check out what we are going to do.
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JR Kyoto Station
Trekking along the Kiyotaki River
Gioh-ji and Johjako-ji Temples
The Bamboo Forest and Nonomiya Shrine
JR Kyoto Station
The most fascinating point of this trekking tour is that you can see, hear and feel the natural wonder along the Kiyotaki River, especially in late autumn. The colored leaves of maple, Japanese lacquer and other trees amuse your eyes and the murmur of the stream delights your ears.
Jingo-ji Temple, which houses Yakushi Nyorai ( Medicine Buddha ), a Buddhist statue (national treasure) and other excellent statues, is famous for red leaves of maple trees. You can take in a magnificent view of the mountains and valley from the temple precinct.
The next temple to visit is Gioh-ji in Arashiyama, the name of which was taken from Gioh, a dancer and prostitute, who had to live in the temple and lead a sorrowful life with Gijo, her twin sister in the latter half of Heian period ( late 12th century ). The temple with a beautiful moss-covered garden is located in a very serene environment.
The third temple is Johjako-ji Temple, which I suppose is the most beautiful temple for autumn foliage in Arashiyama. It is said that "the One Hundred Poems by the One Hundred Poets" was compiled by Fujiwara no Teika, a famous waka poet, in the early 13th century on the temple site. You can also enjoy seeing a green velvet-like moss on a hillside of the temple.
You will lastly visit Nonomiya Shrine in the Bamboo Forest known as a shrine of match-making and business success. Last but not least, Gioh-ji Temple and Nonomiya Shrine were a part of the locations of a renowned novel, "Koto ( the ancient capital )" written by Kawabata Yasunari, a Nobel laureate.
transportation fee ( you and guide ) and entrance fee for the three temples (￥1,400 )
This is a limited time tour from November 14th till December 3rd in 2019. It is desirable to wear warm clothes and trekking shoes. Sneakers are possible. Please get a bottle of water or tea and an obento ( a boxed lunch ) at a convenience store near your hotel or Kyoto Station. You will take a bus twice from Kyoto Station to Takao. The route along the Kiyotaki River is a part of Kyoto Trail Hiking Course. Most of the route along the Kiyotaki River is a safe path and warning will be given at slippery places. Responsibility cannot be taken for any injury during the tour. It is recommended that you have overseas travel insurance. In case of rain, trekking along the Kiyotaki River is canceled and two other temples are added in Arashiyama Area instead.
We had some trouble finding Yoshie to begin with, but we quickly made up for lost time and after that it was a great experience! With his insider knowledge we had a really smooth trip and learned a lot, and he saved me a lot of trouble in trying to find my way around sale breweries in an unfamiliar city. He managed to find us the best steak we've ever had too! I'd highly recommend Yoshie :)
Hi Shannon. Thank you very much for your nice review and the souvenir. I was inside of the west gate of the station, just in case you would be at the west side of the central gate. Anyway I am pleased that you all liked the Kobe beef steak lunch and the visit to the two sake breweries in Nada. I hope you will have lots of fun during your stay in Kyoto and return home safely. With warmest regards, Yoshie
Our U.S. family of 5, including 3 teenagers, spent 3 days touring Kyoto, Hiroshima, and Miyajima with Yoshie. He was fabulous! His English is impeccable. He was gracious and welcoming, kind, and extremely knowledgeable. He planned our days at a nice active and efficient pace. My teenagers voted him our “best guide ever.”
Hi Diane. I really appreciate your kind words of gratitude for my three-day tour in Kyoto and Hiroshima. I am very pleased to learn that your children, too, enjoyed it a lot. I hope you will return home safely with lots of nice memories and souvenirs of Japan. Next time you have another chance of visiting Kansai region, be sure to get in touch, please. With the best wishes, Yoshie.
Yoshihisa-san is one of the rare gems you will ever meet during your trip, especially if you love learning Japanese history and culture. I had read a lot about Japanese history before but during our tour Yoshihisa-san made us understand so much more. Myfamily had a booked a 2 day tour with Yoshihisa-san and as usual, we wanted to visit the famous tourists sites of Kyoto. These were more of the typical spots you find on a "Top Ten" places to visit in Kyoto. Thankfully Yoshihisa-san convinced me to see some other places as well, which we have no regrets and in fact feel so lucky to have visited them. Some of the places he took us to allowed us to catch the amazing Autumn fall of Kyoto. My family and I will never forget our experience at the Jojakkoji Temple where we saw the most amazing autumn colours. We were surrounded by the most surreal environment where your eyes just can't believe the beauty of the temple and its nature. We took so many pictures there, that we got exhausted of taking pictures for the rest of the day :) Yoshihisa-san also told us many interesting stories of the places we visited, I recall the story of Buddha turning back to tell the priest "You're late!" at the Eikando Temple which was an interesting narrative. Also we were fortunate enough to hear and learn several Haiku Poetry from him and understand the beauty of its meaning. The two days we spent together went by so fast and when our tour ended on the 2nd day, it was hard for us to part. We had taken so many pictures together and these are fond memories we will always treasure. Thank you Yoshihisa-san!
Hi Abilash-san. It is a great honor and a pleasure to receive such a supreme review for my two-day tour in Kyoto. Your deep interest in Japanese history and culture made my job very rewarding and worthwhile. Through this tour I made a new discovery about the temple, Eikando, you visited, thank you so much. Personally I also enjoyed spending the two days with your family a lot. Your wife and child were most lovely during the whole two days. I hope to see you someday in the near future, maybe in our cherry-blossom season. With the warmest regards, Yoshie
Yoshi gave us a lovely guided tour of the Kyoto shrines. He planned the day very well and gave us a great deal of information about the culture and history of the spots we visited. We had lunch at a local restaurant and dinner at a restaurant at the Kyoto station before departing. It was a great day overall!
Hi David. I am sorry to have been late in answering your review. I was away from home for the past four days on a trip. Thank you so much for your heartwarming comment on my tour in Kyoto. I am pleased to learn that you enjoyed the tour and the meals in Kyoto a great deal. Next time you have another chance of visiting Kansai region, let me guide you more leisurely, please. With kind regards, Yoshie