About Deep Kyoto

Deep Kyoto was created in June 2007 as a website for Kyoto residents and tourists, introducing those good places and people that make up the modern city. The primary focus of the blog was originally on cafes, bars and restaurants of character. Food and drink, with a focus on vegetarian and organic fare, still remains a major emphasis. However, over time Deep Kyoto has grown and evolved and now you will find articles in all of the following categories: art, crafts & photography; music, dance & performance, city design & conservation; book reviews, poetry & protest; flea markets, festivals, shrines & temples; museums, parks & gardens; walks & meditations and more! Guest contributors Ian Ropke, John Dougill and Keiji Minato have expanded the blog’s scope still further with articles on Kyoto’s culture and tradition.

In addition Deep Kyoto has formed strong links with the magazine Kyoto Journal, the conservation group People Together for Mt. Ogura (P.T.O.), the Hailstone Haiku Circle, Tohoku disaster relief N.P.O. IDRO JAPAN, and most recently with the Kyoto Center for Community Collaboration who are working to preserve traditional machiya townhouses and machiya culture in this great city.

 Please note that many of the places recommended on this website are not found in your average travel guide, and may require you to dust off your phrasebook and practice some basic Japanese. Deep Kyoto is also my excuse to venture deeper into the Japanese community, and to learn still more about this city and its people. To that end, if you have any recommendations for me, please send them here: m.0.luain.23[at]gmail.com. However, remember that if I don’t like it, I don’t review it. Life is just too short.

Disclaimer: Please note that the author of this blog is not able to help people find work or accommodation in the city of Kyoto. Please also remember that Deep Kyoto is a blog and that the information and prices quoted here, though correct at the time of posting, are subject to change. Many of the reviews are now eight years old (!) so if you spot some information that is now incorrect, please do not hesitate to let me know, either in the comments or by email: m.0.luain.23[at]gmail.com (The 0 is a zero and the [at] is an @ !)

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13 responses to “About Deep Kyoto

  1. Stephen Massil

    I was in Kyoto in 1986 and unguided came across a fairly substantial store with textiles and so forth. I bought three high quality painted handkercheifs – since dispensed to old friends, as I thought but no-one remembers receiving one. I was there in 2007 and found no such quality examples or any likely shops and there wasn’t time to investigate
    I shall be again in Kyoto for a few days in April and shall hope to track these down
    Do you have advice as to what I am looking for and whether there might be different categories of such textiles, I repeat, fine cloth with apparently painted (flowery?) tracings, the size of a handkerchief rather than a scarf or tray cloth but not of a small-pocket size
    My other interest is to find a good-quality shakuhachi flute
    I shall be staying at :
    The Royal Park Hotel: Kawaramachi Higashi-iru,Sanjo-dori,Nakagyo-ku
    and while I shall be happy to explore the neighbour thoroughly, I shall be prepared to go further afield to track these items down
    With thanks for any advice
    Stephen Massil

  2. Michael Lambe

    Let me get back to you on that…

  3. andy painter

    Howdy! Just wanted to pass the word on an exceptional music event happening in Osaka on St. Patrick’s Day, March 17th at 8pm. Hope this isn’t taken as spam…
    Julien Quentin, my good buddy, is an internationally renowned musician who connects the worlds of techno, improvisation, and electronic music. Having toured most of the major concert halls of the world as a classical pianist, on March 17, 2013 Julien is bringing his electronic set to Osaka, Japan for the very first time. At ease with a wide range of musical styles, his eclectic mix of Detroit, minimal and techno music—combined with stellar synth work in real time—will blow your mind. Join us in the posh, intimate space at Saruoh (Monkey King) Restaurant just one block from the Apple Store in Shinsaibashi on St. Patrick’s Evening, March 17, at 8pm. Admission is only 1500 yen and includes a delicious buffet provided by the Saruoh chefs. See you there!

    カサドマートビル 1F

  4. Michael Lambe

    Thank you Andy,

    As this blog is strictly about Kyoto, I won’t be posting your event on here, but I can share it on my facebook page: https://www.facebook.com/deep.kyoto

    Best wishes,

    Michael Lambe

  5. Hello, I was introduced to this blog page through my good friend of Israel, Nona Orbach, an artist and art therapist, and I am very honored to write you here.
    We are holding an event of Japanese music and dance with Nona’s moon photos displayed this autumn.

    Moon and Koto and Dance and Song
    Jikkoin Temple, Ohara, Kyoto on October 25, 2015

    If you could come visit or write about the event, we would be very appreciating.

    Thank you very much,
    Shizu Wakayagi

  6. Thanks! I’ll share your event on the Deep Kyoto Facebook group page.

  7. Hi, Mr. Lambe,
    Thank you so much for your wonderful website and blog, which I am just beginning to explore.

    A question about Taizo-in: When will it be possible to see the new fusuma-e painted by Murabayashi-san? I visited the garden last spring, but was told the fusuma-e were not ready yet. The website is not up-to-date on this question. I would like to plan my next trip to Kyoto around seeing the fusuma-e. If you have any information, I would appreciate it.

    Another question I hope to find out from a blogger concerns the name of a particular Kyoto writer; a woman who lived to be very old and wrote a collection of essays in Japanese titled something like “My Kyoto.” (I am hoping one of your fellow Kyoto Bloggers has a literary background and could help. Otherwise I will ask university professors here in Chicago.)

    With gratitude for any help you can give —

  8. Michael Lambe

    Dear Beth,

    I’m afraid I don’t know the answer to either of those questions. Please contact Taizo-in directly about the fusuma-e: http://www.taizoin.com/en/contact/

    As for the book you mentioned, maybe someone at the Writers in Kyoto group might know: http://www.writersinkyoto.com/contact-us/

    Best wishes,

    Michael Lambe

  9. Thank you so much, Michael!

    Best regards,

  10. Hi! We are moving to Kyoto for 2 years from August. My husband has a job at the International School. Just sooo thrilled to find your blog. Amazing.
    Anna from NZ

  11. Many thanks for your kind words Anna. I know some people at the international school. I’m sure your husband will be very happy there.

    Best wishes,


  12. Joaquin Gonzalez

    Hello dear friends!!

    I hope this email finds you very well!

    I am an Uruguayan musician currently living in Barcelona. I am a singer/songwriter and have recorded four solo albums. Also play guitar in a pretty well known funk band called Croupier Funk.

    I will be travelling to Japan mid-may next 2017 and am looking for nice places to perform. Maybe you can suggest some or facilitate some contact? Would be great to perform together with local artists

    Here are some of my albums:
    and here you can check out some of my videos:

    looking forward to hearing from you, I can send you more stuff if you need

    I hope we can work something out, cheers!


  13. Michael Lambe

    Hi there,

    You could try contacting UrbanGuild but I don’t know if they would have time for you on their schedule.


    I’m afraid I am not able to arrange this kind of thing.

    Best wishes,


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