1. Japan
  2. Kyoto Prefecture
  3. Kyoto
  4. Kyoto Station

Kyoto: 3.5-Hour Small Group Cycling Tour

Product ID: 15369
Jump on a bike to experience the real Kyoto on this half-day cycling tour of Japan’s imperial capital. This is the local transportation of choice, and there’s no better way to discover the city's historic temples, beautiful parks, and picturesque views.
About this activity
Duration: 3.5 hours
Starting times 8:45 AM, 1:45 PM
Printed or mobile voucher accepted
Instant confirmation
Live tour guide
English
Free cancellation up to 24 hours before activity starts

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Experience

Highlights
  • Cycle along the ancient canals of Kyoto
  • Learn about the city’s history at Heian-Jingu Shrine
  • Stroll through the expansive grounds at Nanzenji Temple
  • Discover the meaning of tranquillity along the famous Path of Philosophy
  • Cycle under the shade of hundreds of cherry trees
  • Discover a pocket of Kyoto’s ancient forests at Shimogamo Shrine
Full description
Discover the real Kyoto while cruising the streets of Japan’s cultural capital on this half-day Kyoto bike tour. With a history spanning over 1,200 years, the city streets have a lot to say, so make like the locals and jump on a bike to discover it all.

Start the day cycling along the Kamo River, taking in the views of the city’s downtown and passing the wealth of traditional riverside restaurants. Call by the Heian-Jingu Shrine, built in 1894 to commemorate the 1,100 anniversary of the foundation of the capital.

Next, weave your way along quaint canals to reach the impressive Nanzenji Temple. Admire the temple’s spacious grounds with a surprising feature: a scenic aqueduct, with the Higashiyama Mountains as their backdrop. This is one of the most important Zen temples in all of Japan, so soak up the surrounds before jumping back on your bike and heading off down the Path of Philosophy.

Arguably the most popular walking path in Kyoto, the Path of Philosophy is shaded by hundreds of cherry trees that erupt into bloom every April. It's a spectacular sight to see then, but it's rather beautiful the rest of the year as well. It's a great place to contemplate the tranquillity and beauty of the area, just like Nishida Kitaro, one of Japan's most famous philosophers, did when he named this route on his daily commute to Kyoto University.

Cycle back towards Kyoto Station, along a beautiful canal with old teahouses and traditional bathhouses among the cherry trees and traditional narrow backroads. We'll end this Kyoto city tour back at the city's buzzing station.
Includes
  • English-speaking guide
  • Bicycle and helmet
What’s Not Included
  • Personal items
  • Tips for your guide

Prepare for the activity

Meeting point

In front of Kyoto Tourist Information Center on 2nd floor of Kyoto Station next to Isetan Department Store. In Japanese: “Kyoto-kan-koo-annai-jo” Address: 600-8216 2nd Floor Kyoto Station, Karasuma, Shimogyo-ku, Kyoto City , Kyoto Prefecture

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Important information
What to bring
  • Comfortable shoes
  • Comfortable clothes
Know before you go
Please note that this tour covers about 15 kilometers (around 9 miles) by bicycle, and can be quite strenuous for travelers who are not used to cycling. We recommend this tour for guests who have at least a medium level of fitness ability.
Customer reviews

Overall rating

4.7 / 5

based on 83 reviews

Review summary

  • Service
    4.8 / 5
  • Organization
    4.7 / 5
  • Value for money
    4.5 / 5
  • Safety
    4.8 / 5
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Fantabulous way to see the natural beauty of Kyoto even though it is winter time! Blessed to have sunny weather. I like the nature and the eco-friendly way of viewing the city. Glad to have an experienced guide, Ryo, so we didn't get lost and heard anecdotal stories of the various places. It was a pleasant ride by the river, along the small streets of Gion, and a gradual ascend to the top to the many scenic shrines and temples. I didn't feel that I was going uphill because Ryo directed us in zigzag manner upwards. Thoughtful of her.

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December 27, 2019

We easily found our guide at the train station and walked a short way to our bikes. Riding the bikes around Kyoto was a great way to see the city in a way that you would not normally see it. The first half of the bike ride was on wide levees along the river and made for a very easy bike ride. There was some rolling hills but not too difficult to manage. We made a few stops to see some really interesting sites and our guide had great knowledge of the historical sites as well as great command of the English language. On the way back the trip was a little more technical in the sense that we were weaving in and out of people, buses, and traffic. If you were familiar with bikes and riding then it was pretty easy to manage however if you get flustered with city writing then this section may be a bit of a struggle. We left our guide Ryo! She traveled at the perfect pace and seemed to know the exact time that we needed to stop for some ice cold green tea on a hot day!

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June 30, 2019

Great tour around the quieter and beautiful shrines and temples

Our tour guide, Michael, was great - good English and had a lot of local knowledge and history to tell us. We had a nice small group of 6 of us and the cycle was at a good pace. You get helmets and cycling around the area felt safe. I felt like we saw a lot of places in the 3.5 hours we were going around and there was a good mix of cycling and also stopping to see some of the shrines and temples. The only thing I would recommend would be to add a stop for water or food as you have to bring your own but some people may forget, or it wasn't obvious.

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June 27, 2019

Organized by

Urban Adventures Japan

Product ID: 15369