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Kansai

Food & Gourmet Tours

Our most recommended Kansai Food & Gourmet Tours

Nara: Big Buddha, Bambi and Backstreets Cultural Tour

1. Nara: Big Buddha, Bambi and Backstreets Cultural Tour

Accompanied by your tour guide, head straight to one of Nara’s top historical sites and one of the largest wooden buildings in the world, the Todaiji temple. Its famous centerpiece is the 15-meter bronze statue of the Great Buddha, Vairocana. On our way, you will be greeted by the friendly deer of Nara. The deer are divine protectors of the ancient capital living in perfect harmony with the locals. Next stop is the second of the seven great temples of Nara, Kofukuji. Make a brief stop at the Sarusawa pond, well known for its turtles and the pretty scenery surrounding it; this is considered a perfect spot for a romantic evening walk in Nara. Move forward into the quiet alleys and backstreets of Nara-machi, the well-preserved former merchant's district, where you will be able to see and experience unique traditional arts and crafts. As the best way to experience a city is through its food, you will get the chance to test some of our favorite local delights. The last stop of your journey will take you to a shopping street, where you can find colorful and diverse shops, perfect for souvenir hunting.  Both the JR Nara station and the Kintetsu station are within comfortable walking distance from the finishing point of the tour. Your guide will be happy to help you with directions to your hotel or to provide a restaurant recommendation for lunch. Do not forget to ask for more hints and tips on what else there is to do in Nara during your time here. 

Nara: Half-Day UNESCO Heritage & Local Culture Walking Tour

2. Nara: Half-Day UNESCO Heritage & Local Culture Walking Tour

Meet your knowledgeable guide at the meeting point and begin your cultural half-day walking tour of Japan's first historical capital. As you walk by the shopping arcade, explore a Japanese old town extremely different from a metropolis like Tokyo. Walk between the historical buildings, and go inside a traditional merchant's house to see how people around here live in the past. Next, take a break from walking to observe the mysterious pyramid-shaped structure in the middle of the quiet town. Admire the view of the city of Nara from the hill, then visit Todai-ji Temple and Kasuga Taisha Shrine, both UNESCO World Heritage Sites. Learn about the distinct Japanese religious culture as you see a huge temple with a great Buddha statue, then explore a beautiful shrine housing hundreds of lanterns. In this area, meet and feed the wild deer living in Nara Park. For over 1,200 years, locals have believed that deer are sacred divine messengers. Interact with them and see how polite they are. At the end of the tour, savor a delicious Japanese lunch dish made only using local Nara vegetables and fresh meat.

Kyoto: Arashiyama Bamboo Forest Walking Food Tour

3. Kyoto: Arashiyama Bamboo Forest Walking Food Tour

Start the tour from the JR Saga Arashiyama station. The Arashiyama district, located west of the Kyoto city center, has long been a scenic leisure spot. Many ancient aristocrats had their villas here 1000 years ago and enjoyed writing literature and poetry. Today, the area is one of the most popular tourist sites in Kyoto.  First, explore the Bamboo Forest and quiet Sagano District, a peaceful neighborhood known for its beautiful maple trees. Then, visit Tenryu-ji temple which was built in 1339 by the Shogun Ashikaga in memory of the Emperor Go-Daigo and was a complex of more than 100 buildings. They were mostly destroyed by fires and civil wars over the years, but the traditional garden remains in its original form, designed by the monk Muso. Enjoy walking in the landscaped garden. After walking, taste Japanese croquette, leek pancakes, and sweet potato. Then, head over to the Togetsukyo bridge which, as the area’s landmark, dates back to the 9th-century and provides a good photo taking spot for visitors today. At the end of this half-day tour, have a nice sweets. If you like, you can enjoy shopping around after the tour because the this tour finished in a district where you can find many souvenirs.

Kyoto: 4-Hour Arashiyama Walking Tour

4. Kyoto: 4-Hour Arashiyama Walking Tour

Start the tour from the JR Saga-Arashiyama station North Exit. Skip the regular and crowded route which leads directly to the bamboo forest, and make your way to the lesser-known Saga-Toriimoto area.  Visit the local gift shops and beautiful local temples and shrines. Learn about the local stories and legends of the area from your guide. Enjoy the beauty of the bamboo forest and learn about its significance for the locals.  Next, visit Tenryu-Ji temple, a UNESCO World Heritage Site, famous its beautiful Sogenchi pond and garden which was once owned by local aristocrats. Walk towards Arashiyama's iconic Togetsukyo bridge. Then, enjoy a traditional lunch with typical Kyoto cuisine. Enjoy the views over the Togetsukyo bridge from the restaurant while you are eating.

Osaka City: Food Origins Exploration Game

5. Osaka City: Food Origins Exploration Game

Play a 1.5-hour exploration game in the heart of Osaka city and discover the historical changes of the city from the Edo period to the present. Explore food heaven in Osaka, follow the clues, and try delicious and peculiar dishes along the way. Follow each culinary clue on your smartphone and get exact directions to the next location so you will not need a map, GPS, or guide. Unlock the secret story of each place as you solve the problems and guess the answers. Play individually, as a group, and solve the clues together as you walk or split into smaller teams and compete against the others. Download the app, go to the starting point, and begin the adventure!

Kyoto: 2-Hour Gion Geisha District Tour

6. Kyoto: 2-Hour Gion Geisha District Tour

Explore Gion, the centuries-old entertainment district of Kyoto, which truly comes alive at night. With your guide, learn about the customs of the geisha and the apprentice maiko. You may catch a glimpse of a few of the women in full costume.  Walk through the narrow streets with the lanterns flickering on the wooden buildings. Enjoy a night visit to a Shinto shrine, with a beautifully lit pagoda. Wander through the grounds of a Zen temple in the tranquil calm of the night. Learn more about the modern history of the entertainment district from your guide.

Osaka: Dotonbori Street & Kuromon Market Walking Food Tour

7. Osaka: Dotonbori Street & Kuromon Market Walking Food Tour

Meet your guide on the basement floor of Nippombashi Station at around 10:45 AM. For your first tasting, you will try Yakitori at the local chicken store, where they only sell Japanese local chicken. Then, taste an Oden, a minced meat cutlet, and enjoy conversation with locals. You then head to the nearby Kuromon market, where there is a sushi restaurant preferred by locals. Here, you will try some sushi. After sushi, you will go through Doguya-suji street, a favorite street of kitchen professionals, and enjoy viewing "Plastic Food". Then, eat Osaka's soul food, Takoyaki & Okonomiyaki. You can have a go at making your own Okonomiyaki yourself on this tour. After your stomach is full, explore Dotonbori Street: the craziest place in Japan. You can also find a hidden quaint spot nearby. Your guide will accompany you on your trip like a local friend: don't be afraid to ask if you need any help.

Kyoto: Walking Tour in Gion with Breakfast at Nishiki Market

8. Kyoto: Walking Tour in Gion with Breakfast at Nishiki Market

Start out the tour by enjoying the fresh, morning air while walking through Gion. A local tour guide will show you around the calm and quaint morning of Kyoto.  Enjoy the peaceful atmosphere which is a big contrast to the vibrant energy at night. After a healthy little walk, you will visit a shrine that is loved by locals. Once arrived at the market savor a one of a kind Japanese breakfast along with tasting 4 to 5 exquisite dishes selected by your local guide. Nishiki Market has over 400 years of history and has been loved by locals as the "Kitchen of Kyoto" for a long time. The name implies that Nishiki Market is rich with the famous gourmet cuisine of Kyoto. Your local and knowledgeable guide will provide you with valuable information that you cannot get from an ordinary sightseeing tour. During the tour, you are welcome to ask any questions about the history and culture of Kyoto. Your local guide is happy to answer all of them.

Nara: Craft Beer and Sake Walking Tour

9. Nara: Craft Beer and Sake Walking Tour

In this walking tour, you will go to the main shopping street to attend a mochi pounding performance and have a mochi freshly made to get the best quality ever. Then, have a taste of the authentic sushis from Nara called "Kaki no Ha Zushi" (A special sushi rolled in a persimmon fruit leaf). The real fun starts with a Sake distillery, where you will learn a lot about sake, its history, and its manufacturing, all with a delicious tasting session (Up to 5 drinks). Then, next stop with a local craft beer microbrewery with a drink and snacks included. You will then finish with a local Izakaya/Bar, where the owner will welcome you with a drink and food for everyone. What a great way to start the evening!

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What people are saying about Kansai

Overall rating

5.0 / 5

based on 21 reviews

Our guide was friendly and informative. We thoroughly enjoyed the tour. Lots of different sights, sounds, smells and tastes and places that we would never have found on our own.

Very nice the tour. Deer, the great Buddha and the guardians, temples, and ends in a commercial area with restaurants. 4h tour The guide very attentive and walking at our pace.

This tour was so interesting. A great way to learn so many things!

Thank you for providing so much information in such an enjoyable way. Highly recommend this tour and this company.

Great tour guide! Niall was professional and very helpful with providing a pleasant tour.

The game in Osaka was an amazing experience to do with kids. We enjoyed it a lot.