One of the most popular tourist hubs in Japan, the Gion District in Kyoto is renowned worldwide for its exclusive Geisha services and performances that have enthralled travelers and explorers from around the world. Replete with shops, restaurants and ochaya or tea houses, the district houses some of the best geiko and maiko apprentices who are skilled in their particular art forms. The high concentration of traditional, wooden Machiya merchant houses gives the entire district an old city feel and one of its most popular spots is the Hanami-Koji Street which is an exclusive location to dine in, where guests can enjoy authentic Japanese dishes along side an array of international specialties.
The best way to experience the rich culture and lifestyle of the iconic geiko and maiko performers is during a tea ceremony at the ochaya, where these experts of hospitality ensure that guests are entertained with light conversation, serving drinks, leading games and performing traditional dance and music styles. As the services of the geisha are extremely exclusive, entry into any of these tea houses or performing centers is usually from introduction through an existing customer. However a more accessible an open experience is the cultural performance held at the Gion Corner at the end of Hanami-koji.