Guided cycling tours of Kyoto

京都サイクリングツアープロジェクト KCTPKyoto Cycling Tour Project

Home > Frequently Asked Questions about our cycling tours

faq

  1. Getting started · Tour meeting points · Baggage · Language
  2. Fitness/skill level · Bicycles · Helmets · Age limits · Children
  3. Tour details · What to bring · Food · Bike rental
  4. Booking a tour
  5. Weather
  6. Cancellations

1. Getting started · Tour meeting points · Baggage · Language

Is cycling in Kyoto safe?
To ensure safe cycling, our tours have a maximum of six guests per guide (larger groups will be divided up). Our guides also know Kyoto very well and choose the best routes, for example with less traffic and hills, depending on your comfort and fitness level, so you can participate with peace of mind.
Where is the meeting place for tours?
Tours meet and start at one of our cycle terminals. The meeting point depends on the tour.
* Kyoto Station Cycle Terminal is the start point for Kyoto Back Street Tour, The Kyoto World Heritage Tour (East and West), and Fushimi Inari Tour.
* Kinkakuji Cycle Terminal is the start point for Kyoto Golden Tour.
* South of Gosho Cycle Terminal is the start point for Kyoto Silver Tour and The Riverside Tour.
Location of our cycle terminals
What is the best way to get to the meeting place?
* Kyoto Station Cycle Terminal: 3 minutes walk from JR Kyoto Station Central Exit (north side), 2 minutes walk from Nishinotoin Entrance (BIC CAMERA).
* Kinkakuji Cycle Terminal: From Kyoto Station, take city bus 205 (heading to Kitaoji Bus Terminal Via Kinkakuji Temple) or 50 (heading to Ritsumeikan Univ). Get off at Kinugasa Ko-mae and walk for about 3 minutes, or get off at Wara Tenjin-mae and walk for about 4 minutes.
* South of Gosho Cycle Terminal: Get off at Marutamachi Subway Station, exit 3 and walk for about 2 minutes.
Where does the tour end?
The end location depends on the tour.
* Kyoto Station Cycle Terminal is the end point for the Kyoto Back Street Tour, The Kyoto World Heritage Tour (East and West), and Fushimi Inari Tour
* Arashiyama Sightseeing Parking Lot is the end point for Kyoto Golden Tour
* South of Gosho Cycle Terminal is the end point for Kyoto Silver Tour, and The Riverside Tour
Location of our cycle terminals
Can you store my luggage?
For tours departing from/ending at Kyoto Station Cycle Terminal or South of Gosho Cycle Terminal, luggage such as suitcases can be stored free of charge. However, valuables, fragile items, and food cannot be stored. Please also note that luggage cannot be stored on tours with different departure and end locations.
What language does the guide speak?
Japanese- and English-speaking guides are available. Please tell us your preferred language at the time of booking.
We can also arrange French- or Spanish-speaking guides. Please contact us separately with this request.
What are the terms of use for the tour?
Please see our reservations and cancellations policy

2. Fitness/skill level · Bicycles · Helmets · Age limits · Children

Do I need to be very fit?
Tours follow relatively flat roads and move at a leisurely pace, so if you’re used to riding a bicycle you should be able to join any tour without problems.
If you are not confident in your physical fitness, we recommend taking a half-day tour. In particular the Back Street Tour and the Kamogawa Riverside Tour both follow many flat roads. Also note that on tours that depart from and finish at Kyoto Station (Back Street Tour, Fushimi Inari & Sanjusangen-do Temple, The Kyoto “World Heritage Tour” East Course), you can opt for an electric-assist bicycle (separate charge of 1,000 yen per bike). With an electric-assist bicycle you can participate without worrying too much about getting tired.
What kind of bicycles do you offer?
We use our original bicycle “Ginrin” (silver ring), 26-inch, city cycle with an internal 8-speed transmission and auto light. For larger cyclists, we have an L size Ginrin or mountain bike. For smaller cyclists, we have Mini Velo small diameter bikes and children’s mountain bikes. Electric-assist bicycles are also available.
See the full details of our bicycles
Can I use my own bicycle?
Sorry, due to insurance, we can’t allow people to participate in our tours on their own bicycles.
Is it necessary to wear a helmet?
In Kyoto, helmets are optional for people over 13, but we lend helmets for free to anyone who wishes to use one.
Is there an age limit on your tours?
Children can participate from age 10 and over, and there is no upper age limit. People of all ages must be able to comfortably cycle on public roads during the tour. See below for more info regarding children.
Can children participate?
Children are very welcome, but we do have some guidelines. Children must be aged 10 years or older, at least 110cm tall, and able to ride their own bicycle comfortably to join a tour. If your child doesn’t meet the above requirements, the cycling tour will be changed to a walking tour or cancelled. (Please note that a cancellation fee will be charged for cancellation in this case.)
Which tour is recommended for families with children?
We recommend Kyoto Back Street Tour. All our tours can be enjoyed by families, but this tour is particularly popular with young children because it’s a half-day tour with many flat roads, and you can play along the Kamogawa River.
Which tour is recommended for people not confident in riding a bicycle?
The Riverside tour is particularly good for nervous cyclists. This course avoids cycling on public roads as much as possible, and is centered on the Kyoto Gyoen National Garden and on the Kamogawa Promenade, where there are no traffic lights.

3. Tour details · What to bring · Food · Bike rental

How many people can join a tour?
All our tours are private. We can cater for a group or for just one person. To ensure safety, we allow six people per guide. Larger groups are divided up.
*If you have a group of seven people or more, please contact us separately. We will increase the number of guides and get back to you.
Is there a break during the tour?
We take regular small breaks to check that everyone is comfortable during the tour. In particular, in summer we take care to make sure everyone is hydrated, and guard against heat stroke by cycling and pausing in the shade. In winter we do our best to make sure everyone keeps warm.
Can we finish the tour early?
You can end the tour at any point you wish. However, note that discounts are not possible for customers who choose to shorten their tour.
We can arrange customized tours to suit your particular needs, so please contact us.
What should I bring?
Please wear comfortable and comfortable clothes and shoes according to the temperature and weather. We recommend wearing sunglasses and sunscreen in the summer and gloves in the winter. Helmets and raincoats are provided free of charge.
What kind of lunch do you offer?
Lunch is typically at a Japanese restaurant featuring local cuisine. Your guide will choose a lunch spot based on the meal and atmosphere of the place. Please let us know in advance if you have food allergies, special diets, or a particular lunch request.
Do I need extra money?
Everything you need on the tour, such as admission fees and lunch, is included in the tour price. The only additional money you need is enough to buy a drink if you get thirsty and for any shopping along the way.
Can I rent a bike before or after the tour?
Yes, you can. For an additional charge of 500 yen per bicycle (1,000 yen for electric-assist bicycles), rental is available during business hours (from 9:00 to 18:00).

4. Booking a tour

Do I need a booking?
Yes. Please make your booking request at least two days in advance. Early reservations are recommended, especially during the busy cherry blossom season in March/April, and the autumn leaves season in October/November.
How can I book a tour?
Please submit a booking request via our website at least two days before your desired tour date. You can choose your tour and preferred date via the booking form. For reservations on the day before or same day of your requested tour, please call (+81-75-354-3636), email or visit the Kyoto Station Cycle Terminal. Business hours are 9:00 to 18:00.
How far in advance can I book?
We accept reservations up to one year in advance.

5. Weather

What happens if it rains?
In case of rain, the cycling tour will continue with a raincoat (provided by us) or will be changed to a walking tour. Please note that the tour fee will not be refunded if it is canceled due to rain on the day of the tour.
What happens if there is a typhoon?
In case of bad weather due to typhoon or other natural disaster, if the customer cancels the tour by 6pm the day before, we will give a full refund. If we cancel the tour in advance due to bad weather, we will notify you and give a full refund prior to the tour.

6. Cancellations

What is your cancellation policy?
We charge a cancellation fee as a percentage of the tour price:

Cancellation Policy

Cancellation on the day or no show: 100%

Cancellation the day before the tour: 50%

Cancellation 2 days before the tour: 40%

There is no cancellation fee for cancellations made 3 days or more before the tour.

Who do I contact to cancel a tour?
Please call us (+81-75-354-3636) or, email. For cancellations on the day of the tour, please call us. Business hours are 9:00 to 18:00.