Made In Kyoto Shopping Tour: Tastes of Tea and Sake

3 hr, 30 min

As the cultural heart of Japan and former capital, Kyoto is well known all over the world for its abundance of breathtaking temples, shrines and gardens. It also happens to be the centre of the traditional Japanese arts and crafts movement, so it’s a great place to begin our shopping tour! We invite you to join us on a stroll through Fushimi Momoyama, an attractive shopping area that is often overlooked by tourists but it...
As the cultural heart of Japan and former capital, Kyoto is well known all over the world for its abundance of breathtaking temples, shrines and gardens. It also happens to be the centre of the traditional Japanese arts and crafts movement, so it’s a great place to begin our shopping tour! We invite you to join us on a stroll through Fushimi Momoyama, an attractive shopping area that is often overlooked by tourists but it is, in our opinion, one of the most charming parts of Kyoto, with a rich history, famous for producing green tea and sake.  Our first stop takes us to a well established tea shop that has been serving Kyoto’s tea lovers for over 300 years. Inhale the gentle aroma of freshly roasted green tea as the proud and friendly staff chat to you about the history of green tea in Japan, discuss the many different types that are available and give you tips on how to brew the best green cuppa, if you decide to buy any to take home! We will continue our stroll past some fascinating local shops and artisan workshops that represent the best of Japanese culture. After leaving the shopping arcade, we’ll head to a traditional candy and sweets shop where beautifully crafted Japanese-style sweets have been lovingly handmade for centuries. The agreeable owners are descendants of the original founders and they love to chat to customers about the history of the shop and the delicious sweets they have invented. Of course we will not leave the shop before sampling some Kyogashi, as they are known all over Japan. A box of these makes for a great gift for friends and family back home. Sake is next on our list and as we make our way over to our brewery of choice, we’ll wander through the sake district and pass through some of the traditional brewery buildings that are scattered throughout the area. In the old days, Fushimi was the start of a trade route between Kyoto and Osaka and was known as the gateway to Kyoto. Fushimi literally means hidden water and the area was named this way due to its many hidden, underground water wells that boast pure water that’s low in minerals, which is ideal for the production of world-class sake. Unfortunately, many local breweries have been lost to fire and disaster over the years but some have withstood the test of time and stay true to their centuries-old traditions up to this day. We will visit one of those historical breweries and after learning about the brewing process you will be rewarded with a sampling of a few of their most highly valued bottles. There will be an opportunity to buy your favourite, if you wish — no hard selling on this tour! As the sun sets over the old capital of Japan, we will move by train to another bygone part of the city, Miyagawa-cho. This is the most authentic and least touristy of the five Geisha districts of Kyoto. Hidden in the shadow of the oldest Zen temple in the city, we will visit a unique little workshop while we’re here to witness first hand one of the fading arts of old Japan, kept alive only by a handful of skilled artists and craftsmen. Ukiyo-e is the traditional art of woodblock printing, where the co-operation of three master craftsmen is crucial to success. The owner and proprietor will introduce us to the last step of the process, the actual printing. If you would like a genuine souvenir, it does not get any better than hand printed ukiyo-e on authentic Japanese washi paper! We conclude our little journey at dusk at Gion Kobu Kaburenjo, a.k.a. Gion Corner. Well known to tourists and locals alike, Gion Corner is home to the local geisha theatre where you can enjoy an authentic performance by geisha and maiko (apprentice geisha). We heartily recommend you stay for the show and then take a stroll through the romantic alleyways of Gion, all decorated with glowing red lanterns. Soak up the atmosphere and enjoy the Japan of your dreams! Before we go our separate ways, don’t forget to ask your guide for tips on what else to see and do during your stay in Kyoto. 
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If you find a better price, we'll match it - just send the details to hertz-support@placepass.com.
Lowest Price Guaranteed
If you find a better price, we'll match it - just send the details to hertz-support@placepass.com.

Important Details

Highlights
  • Discover the different blends of japanese green tea and indulge yourself with a tasting in a 300-year old tea room
  • Shop for beautifully handcrafted wagashi sweets at a traditional confectionary shop
  • Visit a sake brewery and taste our favourite varieties
  • Take the train to the most romantic and iconic area of the city, miyagawa-cho
  • Meet one of the oldest woodblock printers in the city and pick up a beautifully unusual and authentic souvenir to take home
  • Local impact: how you taking this tour will benefit the local community:
  •  all the stores we visit are 100% locally owned and run, so any inclusions on the tour and additional purchases you make will directly benefit the local community.
  • At least one store on our itinerary is dedicated to the preservation of locally-produced crafts
  • Supporting locally-run businesses, such as the woodblock printer, helps to preserve traditional crafts for the next generation.
  • You will pick up some responsible travel tips that will help you to be a greener traveller while you’re in the city
Included
  • Local-english speaking guide
  • Green tea tasting
  • Sweets to try
  • Sake tasting
  • Train fare and any entrance fees to the workshops.
Not Included
  • Additional food and drinks
  • Souvenirs and personal shopping
  • Tips/gratuities for your guide.
Departure Point
Kintetsu Momoyama Goryo-mae Station South Exit. View on Google Maps.
Additional Info
  • The Sake tasting is part of the tour, however it is not suitable for visitors who will be driving a vehicle and minors (a minor in Japan is anyone under the age of 20).

Voucher Requirements

Please present this voucher to your guide at the beginning of your tour. Save this email on your phone or tablet, or print a copy, as you will need to show this to join the trip.

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Cancellation Policy

You can cancel for a full refund up to 72 hours before the start of your experience. If you do not show up for the experience or fail to cancel at least 72 hours in advance, you will not receive a refund.