The Unknown Stories of Kyoto’s Backstreets

The Crossroads Leading to Another World

Tour Start

The Crossroads Leading to Another World

Why wait hours in line when you can get lost in the backstreets of Kyoto?

After passing through the winding hills coming down from Kiyomizu-dera Temple, you will arrive at a bus stop on a main street. This street is called Matsuhara-dōri and if you think this is where the story ends you are mistaken. If you continue following the sloping hills across the street to the Kamogawa River, you can take this path all the way to the center of Kyoto. People have used this path throughout history to make the pilgrimage to Kiyomizu-dera Temple. This twisty-turny path looks like it has been walked all over by many people, doesn’t it?

We will lead you down this path to the Kamogawa River: through rare temples and shrines, mysterious shops hidden in the side streets, all the way to the throngs of the geisha quarters. Expect to see the unexpected as you venture out of the metropolitan sprawl and into the unknown and untouched alleyways. 30 minutes from now, when you cross the Kamogawa River with your own two feet, you may ask yourself, why. Why have all these places survived after all this time? There must be a reason.

Now, let’s set off. At the end of this journey lies another bus stop where, luckily, you won’t have to wait at all.

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