Home > SHORT Trip to Kyoto

October 2016

If there is no option to submit your deposit or it says "out of stock", email Nancy at to be added to the waiting list.

: October 24TH - 30th, 2016

BASIC ITINERARY: SIX nights in Kyoto learning about Japanese textiles and culture, shopping at the temple markets, and touring one of the most beautiful and exotic cities in the world. We meet in Kyoto (airfare and transportation to/from the airport is on your own but we can help with recommendations). And yes, we spend the entire time in and around Kyoto! Is it enough? Nope. Most group members arrive a day early and extend their stay.

CLICK HERE for itinerary details

Kyoto Kimono owner Nancy McDonough leads the tour. Nancy lived in Kyoto from 1992-95 and that's where her love of Japanese textiles began. She's looking forward to sharing "her Kyoto" with you.

CAUTION! This trip is not for everyone. If you're flexible, healthy, eager to visit Japan, and normally not inclined to travel in groups (but welcome the chance to meet like-minded others) - this trip could be what you've been waiting for. We provide a great framework from which you can create your own unique, once-in-a-lifetime experience -- but hand-holding is at a minimum. You'll have free days to explore in and around Kyoto on your own, so if you're a hesitant traveler, this is not the trip for you. Also, if you have dietary restrictions, physical limitations, or a low tolerance for the unfamiliar, this is really not the trip for you.

Guests will be asked to prepare for the trip and to conduct themselves in ways that may sometimes be a challenge:

  • physical requirements: be able to walk for an hour without trouble, be able to sit on the floor for a meal, be able to eat with chopsticks...
  • cultural awareness: be knowledgeable about Japanese customs and etiquette, be able to master basic greetings, counting, and polite speech (i.e., "excuse me")
  • group participation: be punctual, flexible, compassionate, attentive, and respectful of group dynamics
The in-country cost of $2500 covers:
- 6 nights in a western-style hotel, single occupancy double room with private bath
- 2 textile workshops
- 1 large temple markets (Kitano Tenmangu on the 25th)
- Breakfast every day and one hearty meal on tour days (not on the free day)
- Transportation and participation costs for all tour activities
- Gifts for our teachers and guides
- Prep materials and other goodies
The price is based on eleven guests plus Nancy.

COMFORT LEVEL: $2500 is a lot of money, but it does not get us luxury-level treatment in Japan. Our hotel is contemporary, clean, convenient and comfortable. You'll have a private room with bath, but the rooms are small. The food will be authentic, local, and plentiful, but you'll need to be able to eat with chopsticks. You'll get to know Kyoto from an ex-pat's perspective, and we'll do whatever we can to help you feel comfortable heading out on your free days to pursue your own adventures. The focus of the trip will be to enjoy Kyoto at a reasonable pace - we can't possibly see it all, so lets be in good spirits and well-rested to enjoy what we can see in the time we have.

PAYMENTS: A $500 deposit reserves your spot, followed by a phone chat with Nancy to discuss the trip and share expectations or concerns. The balance is due by check or money order, split into two payments (March 15th and June 15th).

REFUND POLICY: 75% back for cancellations made at least six months in advance. 50% back for cancellations made at least three months in advance. 25% back for cancellations made at least one month in advance. Participants are required to get traveler's insurance.

Deposit of $500 due by January 30th
March 15th: Half the balance ($1000) due by check; flight itineraries due
April: Prep cycle begins (group member introductions, web, book, and movie recommendations suggested, Free Day interests shared among the group)
June 15th: Balance of $1000 due by check
July: More prep materials suggested, more group communication about shared interests...
August: Special prep materials sent to each guest
September: Final pre-trip check in
October 24th: We all meet up in Kyoto! (US members leave on the 23rd to arrive on the 24th)