Gion Private Tour

The Birthplace of Geisha

Explore Gion with a local guide

Private & Customizable

3 Hours

From JPY19,000/pers.

  Up to 6 persons

Gion & Geisha Tour Highlights

Yasaka Shrine / Gion Hanamikoji / Gion Shirakawa, / Pontocho / Miyagawacho

Gion (祇園) is part of the Higashiyama or “Eastern Mountain” area of Kyoto. It’s one of the famous geisha (called “geiko” in Kyoto) districts in the city, stretching from Yasaka Shrine in the east to the Kamo River in the west, and from the Shirakawa Canal in the north to Kenninji Temple in the south.

Gion started around the Edo period (1603–1867) and originally developed to serve the needs of pilgrims to Yasaka shrine. Many tea houses opened up and these became famous spots for resting and enjoying tea after a morning of visiting shrines and temples.

It ultimately became the home of tea houses, geisha and night entertainment.

The first official geisha were licensed in Kyoto in 1813, 53 years before the Meiji Restoration, but some believe their culture is linked to dancers and performers from the 11th century.

Not the only geisha district left in Japan, Gion is a collection of streets defined by its traditional wooden merchant houses, beautifully illuminated by glittering neon lights and exclusive Japanese restaurants.

Catching a glimpse of a geiko, with her white face and beautiful kimono, rushing to an appointment in the narrow streets of Kyoto’s Gion district is a moment of pure magic.

But, the ultimate experience in Gion is being entertained by a maiko (apprentice) or geiko while dining at an ochaya (teahouse). The maiko and geiko will ensure everyone’s enjoyment by engaging in light conversation, serving drinks, leading drinking games and performing traditional music and dance.


  • 3 hours Private Experience: From JPY19,000/pers. – 2 pers. minimum
  • 0 – 5 years old (free) and 6 – 14 years old (–50%)
  • + 6 guests, contact us for an estimate

Terms of payment

  • 25% deposit paid upon booking
  • Balance paid 35 days before departure


  • Hotel pick up
  • English speaking local guide
  • Your guide’s transportation


  • Your transportation (~JPY1,000/pers.)


  • Please be reminded to wear comfortable shoes
  • Tour can also be done by traditional rickshaw
  • In the unplanned event of using taxis instead of public transportation, extra fees may apply

Booking request

Please fill in the details below and we will reply within 24 hours.

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