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★ Kawadoko Dinner with Maiko

Would you like to know one of the secret places in Kyoto?

Takao is located in the north of Kyoto, a bit remoted area, but very famous for its breathtakingly beauty with full of true nature. Surrounded by great natural beauty and the Kitayama cedars.

Just one hour of journey by train from the central Kyoto, you will be welcomed by these heavenly peaceful nature of beauty.

During the summer months, Takao becomes popular for people to escape from the heat.

The Momijiya, founded in Takao in 1907, is very traditional ryokan with Japanese style rooms.

What is the special feature of Momijiya is their summer dinner plan that includes dance entertainment by maiko.

Spread out through three floors for Kawadoko-style Kyoto special cuisine. You can taste the best of the local cuisine including one of their specialties, "river fish", such as the ayu (sometimes known in English as the sweetfish for the flavor of its flesh).

Enjoy dining on a "kawadoko" platform built out over a scenic river, listen to the sound of the stream and cool off from the summer heat.

Maiko and Kawadoko are almost symbols of Kyoto!

MUST EXPERIENCE that you can't be missed.

Even if you were walking throughout Gion-area for so long, you may need a super luck to come across a real maiko.

But here in Takao, you don't have to feel exhausted from chasing, nor frustrated to take a better view of photo of maiko-san.

After you enjoy a lovely dancing performance of Maiko along with the Japanese traditional Kaiseki cuisine. Maiko will come to your table one by one for pictures with you! Don't forget to carry your camera!! :)

Reservation Needed:
Momijiya Inn - Tel: 075-871-1005

"Dinner Meal with a Maiko"
Price: 12000yen per person.
Only Limited Season: from early June to middle of Sep.

at: 17:25 - Momijiya's bus will pick up you at the bus stop in front of New Hankyu hotel in Kyoto station.

at around: 18:20 - Dinner starts, enjoy viewing maiko-san's lovely dancing performance along with taking pictures service at riverside pavilion (120min)

at: around 21:00 - Momijiya's Bus drop you off at New Hankyu hotel in Kyoto station.

As Autumn version;
This Maiko event will start again from November!

Takao area is very famous for its fire-like red-color maple scenery in Fall.

Dinner is served Not Kawadoko style (outside is too cold), but inside of the room, at their gorgeous banquet tatami room. Of course Maiko-san will give you a nice dancing performance along with a picture time as always :)

Staying at Momijiya-inn would also give you a special experience. Enjoy their special beauty in each season!

Kyoto Visitors? How to Process Free Guide!

★ Kyoto Souvenir - Japanese Doll Kokeshi

When you travel overseas, especially such with different culture and history like Kyoto, one of the most excitement from the trip is "Souvenir", isn't it? In Kyoto there is a lot of unique souvenirs to attract not only the overseas tourists but even us, Japanese. :)

During the tour, I always enjoy helping the guests to find the souvenirs for their friends, families and themselves! When I've guided Italian couple one day in March they told me they'd like to buy Japanese dolls. Roughly, there are two types of dolls as recommended, wooden traditional Kokeshi or Maiko doll.

They preferred Pretty Kokeshi, so I introduced the store I visit often in the tours on the way to Kiyomizu temple. Kokeshi is one of the most popular souvenir as traditional doll in Japan.
In this store, there are lot's of selection, various colors and designes.
Each doll attracts you in different smile, so every body says hard to choose!!! I really understand! :D

And the couple has finally selected two different dolls for their friends.

Each dool is handmade. They may look simple at a first glance, but if you look in detail, they are really nicely made in a different shape and color. It's wooden, but not heavy at all, so you can buy several different models if you want!

After enjoying the tour and souvenir hunting, we were walking in a quite happy mood on the way down to Gion area through Yasaka shrine.

 To tell the truth, as a coincidence, that day was the wife's birthday!! In the afternoon he told me he'd like to order cake while enjoying lunch. But unfortunately, there's no coffee or cake at traditional Japanese noodle restaurants, so given up. I remember the story by sudden in the street, so I introduced the most popular cafe in the area to celebrate her birthday.

Tsujiri is one of the most popular cafe in Kyoto. The queue is always looking endless every day at the main brance in Gion. So I selected the another secret branch near from Kodaiji temple! Luckily, we've found the chair! :)
The husband and I have sung a Happy Birthday Song for her at the table! It was a bit cold weather, but we've enjoyed really warm happy mood, and of course Tsujiri's Matcha flavor "Parfait". ;-

Kyoto Visitors? How to Process Free Guide!

★ Iris, Azalea, Kyoto Flowers Viewing in May

Sakura in April and Momiji in November is quite famous as flower viewing season in Japan. What about in May? Yes, Kyoto is warmly welcoming you with another beautiful color combination of flowers and natures! 

I've guided an Italian couple last week, in late May. We've enjoyed the true fresh air in a perfect weather, strolling through the cozy paths surrounded by beautiful green leaves and colorful flowers.

Please click on the picture to enjoy the picture in the original size

I started the tour from beautiful Arashiyama area, my favorite guiding route through the year. :) This area is quite famous for its cozy local mood and beautiful scenery of mountain and riverside.
The awesome view from the main hall of Tenryuji temple (World Heritage). This garden, Sogenchi pond garden is one of the oldest garden in Japan.  

You would be amazed by it's massive beauty of the landscape spreading in front of your eyes... I'm coming to this temple almost more than 40 times a year, but never felt the same... each time in different appeal.  

In May you would come across such purple pretty along the pond of the garden.

Japanese Iris, I like this purple very much! elegant and gorgeous... :)
Behind the Tenryuji temple there is an awesome Bamboo forest. You would get lost for words when you come across this exotic scenery! You may feel as if you're in a movie?!  

And Yes! This scenery was actually used in the famous movie, "Sayuri, Memory of a Geisha".  Here is one of the Must to Visit in Kyoto! :)

Each traditional Japanese Inn has a beautiful garden with an awesome pine trees in a solemn shape.

Kinkakuji, one of the most famous tourist site in Kyoto! In May you can enjoy the nice decoration in purple along the pond garden, Mirror Lake.

From Arashiyama area, it's easy transportation heading for Kinkakuji temple. Take Randen (Keifuku) train from Arashiyama. It's not JR train, and oldest railway in Japan, feeling very local in the train. :) 

Massive golden Pavilion decorated with fresh green of maple! One of the perfect color combination.

There is some islands in the pond garden. Each island was built specially, some rocks were donated to Shogun by the local feudal lords. Gold and Rock is symbol of power.

Carp enjoy a relaxing swiming.

Finally at Kiyomizu temple. Can you see the Kyoto tower in the distant? We started the tour from there!!!  

Niomon entrance of Kiyomizu temple is nicely decorated with a lot of Japanese azalea in May...

I think Kiyomizu temple is the perfect area to finish the tour, because if you catch the sunset in nice timing, the silhouette of the temple is very beautiful and awesome. and the temple uniquely open until very late like 6pm or 6:30pm depending on the day. So I always arrange the Kiyomizu temple for finale.

Another reason to put Kiyomizu temple in the end is because Gion area is quite near from Kiyomizu area.

 The perfect time to enjoy strolling in Gion's main street is at around 6pm to 7pm. Because if you're lucky you may come across a beautiful Maiko hurring to get to the tea house to start to work.
This is most popular orange entrance of Yasaka shrine. Symbol of Kyoto, located in the middle of Gion area.

Kyoto Visitors? How to Process Free Guide!

2011 Kabuki Calendar!

2011 Kabuki Calendar!
1600yen at Minamiza (Kabuki Theater in Gion) This is Minamiza Orivinal Design! What a Perfect Souvenir Idea!! Or Nice Wall Decoration in your Room! Limited Stock, Hurry to get soon! :)

Kyoto Guide Index

Ask Free Guide 
Kyoto Visiters? Welcome to Guide You! :)
Feedback from the Tourists! Thank you! :)
Kyoto Travel Tips
Drop your Luggages at Kyoto Station!!
Kyoto Itinerary (sorry, now in the rennovation)
"Must to Visit" Nijo castle, Kinkaku-ji, Ryoan-ji, Shijo Karasuma Shopping area, Kiyomizudera,Gion
"Must to Visit" <2nd Day> Arashiyama, Tenryu-ji, Bamboo Forest, Togetsu-bridge, Heianjingu shrine.
"Must to Visit" <3rd Day> Ginkakuji, Philosopher's Path, Nanzenji, Shorenin, Chion-in, Maruyama-Park
"Must to Visit" <4th Day> Fushimi Inari & Nara area
Kyoto Tour by Bicycle!
What to do after Sunset
"Must to Visit" <4th Day> Kyoto Night Cruise (Yoru Bus) Bus Tour
Suberbs of Kyoto
Boat Tours down Hozu River
Boat Tour Movie
Kibune area, Kawadoko Kaiseki Cuisine on the River! (summer)
Takao area, Kawadoko Dinner with Maiko (spring and autumn)
Dinner Retaurants
Twilight Pontocho or Kamogawa Riverbank Dining (summer)Okonomiyaki (at Downtown)
● Okonomiyaki (at Kinkakuji area)
● Kobe Beef
Kyoto Sweets
Kyoto Famous Flavor, What is Matcha?
Kakigoori (Shaved Ice)
Souvenir Tips
Recommend Kyoto Souvenir Gallery 1
Recommend Kyoto Souvenir Gallery 2
Maneki Neko (Lucky Cat)
Shichimi Spice
Astro Boy Museum
Japanese Wooden Doll, Kokeshi
How to Wear Yukata
Tea Ceremony
Tea Ceremony Experience
Matcha (Powdered Green Tea) History
Meet Maiko
Winter Gion - Tea Party with Maiko only by One Coin!
Maiko Dance Performance Every Sundays
Meet and Chat with Maiko on Weekends & National HolidaysKawadoko Dinner with Maiko
Maiko Dancing Movie (Gion Higashi Kouta Music)
Funaoka Onsen, Special Public Bath
Kurama Onsen, Houroku-yu
Plum Festival at Kitano Tenmangu Shrine
Higashiyama Hana Touro Illumination
Kiyomizu Temple, Blue Dragon Dancing
Yabusame-Shinji (Archery on Horseback)
Aoi Festival Parade
Iris/Azalea Viewing
Bonfires, Daimonji Yaki Festival
Ancient Princess Parade (at Arashiyama)
Arashiyama Hana Touro Illumination
Spring Sakura (Cherry Blossom)
Hirano Shrine
Daigoji Temple
Omuro Ninna-ji (World Heritage)
Winter Special
Public Viewing 2009 (Toji, Chionin etc...)
Night Light-Up
What is Autumn Colors
Shoren-in Temple Night Illumination
Try "Omikuji" ! Enjoy reading your fortune

Okonomiyaki in Kyoto

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