Japan, Kyoto Guide (B): A Brief Encounter with a Geisha at Gion, Kyoto

A Brief Encounter with a Geisha at Gion, Kyoto
“Look, look, there’s a geisha!”

“Where? Aren’t those three ladies just playing dress-up?”

“Well, if you had remembered what I said, you could easily distinguish a real geisha from a make-believe one. See the lady wearing the pink kimono on the right? She has her full make-up on, wearing a wig with a simple decorative comb and the big giveaway is the white collar, which separates a geisha from an apprentice. “

I was trying to match the description of a typical geisha with that lady’s characteristics as she slowly walked away from our view before my wife finished it off by saying, “I finally found what I came for.”

Yasaka Shrine

Kyoto has five hanamachi, or geisha districts, and we decided to visit the most recognizable hanamachi at Gion. We ventured out during the evening about an hour or so before sunset so that we could try to catch at least a glimpse of the elusive geiko (local term for geisha) and maiko (geisha apprentice). They can usually be spotted during dinner time when they will be criss-crossing many bars, restaurants and tea houses to serve and entertain their customers. 

Before testing our powers of observation, we visited Yasaka Shrine, a Shinto temple that worships Amaterasu-omikami and Susanoo-no-mikoto, deities residing in the heaven and on earth, respectively. The shrine hosts the 1,100-year old Gion Festival that started out in the year 869 as a means to appease the gods when the whole nation was ravaged ...... (follow the instructions below for accessing the rest of this article).
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Sights Map

Guide Name: A Brief Encounter with a Geisha at Gion, Kyoto
Guide Location: Japan » Kyoto
Guide Type: Self-guided Walking Tour (Article (B))
Sight(s) featured in this guide: Yasaka Shrine   Hanamikoji Street   Naritaya   Shirakawa Canal   Gion-Shijo  
Author: Danial Ariff Bin Ahmad Nordin
Read it on author's website: http://www.dansontheroad.com/2017/11/16/a-brief-encounter-with-a-geisha-at-gion-kyoto/

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