Geisha and Maiko in Gion Kyoto

Geisha and Maiko in Gion Kyoto

A group of Geisha and Maiko walking hastily on our direction.

Luck must be on our side. We have heard stories about Geisha in Kyoto and seeing them in public must be pure coincidence or else you have to pay a premium price for watch them performing. We had our lunch at one of the local restaurants and as we were walking towards the Yasaka Shrine (Yasaka Jinja 八坂神社), we saw a group of Geisha and Maiko walking towards our directions.

Our Japanese friend, Mariko was like telling us, “Gesha!!”

The leader is a Geisha and the followers are Maiko according to our Japanese friend.


We then grabbed our cameras and started snapping pictures. The whole transition was like five to ten seconds. Trust me, they walked really fast.

A pretty looking Geisha walked past me, if I rode a bicycle I would crashed like the scene of “Memoirs of the Geisha”.

One of them actually winked at me!

Mariko then told us that the ladies at the back are actually called Maiko, apprentice of Geisha. Hence, the girls needed to be Maiko first then later on they will be eventually Geisha. However, please do not obstruct them or stop them for pictures as it is wrong to do so.

Of course there are outlets where you pay to see them and have their entertainment but that will be costly.

Geisha is popularized to the world a few years ago with the movie of “Memoirs of the Geisha”.

In Gion Kyoto, there are a few tourist attractions that cannot be missed. They are the Yasaka Shrine, Yasaka Pagoda (Hokanji) and Kiyomizu-Dera temple.