Gion: Geiko Chasing in Hanami-koji
Posted on 12 March 2012
Travel Date: 30 October 2010
Location: Gion area, Kyoto
Gion (祇園) is probably the most famous area in Kyoto, known by the fame of the geisha district. And Hanami-koji (花見小路) is the place in Gion if you wish to meet one. In Kyoto, a geisha is normally called “geiko” and a geiko apprentice is called “maiko”.
Hanami-koji is a beautiful street but it’s quite impossible to enjoy the atmosphere of this place fully as tourists are everywhere, and everyone is hoping to catch a glimpse of a real geiko or maiko. Well, I did manage to see one (above photo), walking in very fast pace, came out from a shop to another. Behind her were a few people following with cameras. Felt a lil sorry for her, although she is probably already used to it.
There are also studios which provide services for tourists to be dressed in kimono (in winter), yukata (in summer), or even as a maiko. Therefore for the most of the time, if you see a geiko or maiko walking gracefully on the street (posing for photos), they’re most likely not the real ones. Just my two cents. Lols!
How To Get There
- The closest station is Gion-Shijo station (祇園四条駅), less than 5min walk from there