Kyoto International Community House (“kokoka”) have organized a free tour of Kyoto Central Wholesale Market for Saturday May 10th. What they don’t mention is that the market is open to the public, every second Saturday of the month, 12 months of the year and worth a visit with or without a guide. It’s not quite on the league of Tokyo’s Tsukiji of course, but an interesting place to visit nonetheless and the seafood is extremely cheap. Mewby and I picked up a huge bag of mussels there on our last visit at a very reasonable price.
Kyoto Cycling Tour Company offers a variety of bicycles for rent, ranging in price from ￥1,000 to ￥2,000 a day. For those who wish to go it alone, the friendly staff will be happy to suggest the best cycling courses and there is also a very handy K.C.T.P. cycling map available. In addition to its rent-a-cycle service K.C.T.P. also offers cycling tours of Kyoto with professional tour guides. Some of the tours on offer include:
The Machiya Tour: “Machiya” are the old wooden town-houses of Kyoto. This tour is a chance to experience traditional Kyoto life as it would have been, fifty, a hundred or even two hundred years ago.
The Mystery Tour: Kyoto has a long and bloody history and so naturally has many ghosts. This is a tour of some of the more famous haunted sites of Kyoto. Not for the faint-hearted!
The Japanese Tea Tour: Experience the Japanese tea ceremony and learn about its deep culture and long history.
Tour prices range between ￥3,900 and ￥9,800, depending on the tour chosen and the duration and all tours must be booked at least three days in advance. See the English website for further details.
Kazuo Taga, who founded K.C.T.P., has a deep sense of mission; both to promote traditional Japanese culture and history, and also to promote the use of bicycles within modern cities. He was kind enough to grant me a short interview, which you can see below.
For bookings and inquiries, please contact KCTP, on their website or telephone them on 075-354-3636. K.C.T.P.’s main terminal is very close to Kyoto Station. Leaving the station’s main north exit (facing Kyoto Tower), turn left and head west, past the post office on your right and then the new Bic Camera store on your left, until you come to the end of the road. K.C.T.P. is just around the right-hand corner. There are also terminals for the rent-a-cycle service dotted throughout the city, and maps and directions to these are available on the website here: K.C.T.P. Terminals.