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Samurai Performance and Casual Experience: Kyoto Ticket

star-4.585 Reviews
Kyoto, Japan

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icon1 hour  (Approx.)
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iconOffered in: English and 1 more


Learn the arts of the samurai as you enjoy a 1-hour Kembu show, a traditional sword performance celebrating the culture of this ancient Japanese warrior class, in Kyoto. Head to Kyoto’s Samurai Kembu Theater to admire the intricate movements of traditional and new-style Kembu performances, celebrating the legendary stories of Japan’s feudal period. You’ll also hear a fascinating talk before the performance and have time for a photo session with samurai sword and the performers post-show.
  • Watch demonstrations of the traditional art of Kembu and discover the practices of the samurai
  • Learn about the responsibility of carrying a samurai sword, traditionally given to young warriors during feudal times
  • Take your own photo with a performer while holding a sword and fan
  • Choose from two showtimes to suit your schedule
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After a show of the first half, let's enjoy the casual experiences such as a sword, the folding fan.
The first half will be a show part and the second half will be a casual experience.
Hotel pickup and drop-off
Food and drinks

Departure Point

Samurai Kenbu Theater, 35-7 Sanchome, Higashiyama-Ku GOZAN Hotel B1F, Kyoto 605-0005 Kyoto Prefecture

Departure Time

4:15 PM
Journey back in time more than 700 years, to Japan’s feudal period, as you enjoy Kembu, a sword performance associated with the country’s samurai warriors. This fascinating show combines the grace, beauty and power of samurai sword practice with a chance to learn about the culture of historic Japan.

Begin your performance at Kyoto’s Samurai Kembu Theater, your arrival coinciding with your selected show time. Before starting the show, take off your shoes (in traditional Japanese style) and find your seat. Your show begins with narration from a performer, who provides an informative introduction to the history and techniques of the traditional art of Kembu.

The show then continues with a series of Kembu demonstrations. Before each demo, you’ll hear a short history lesson about samurai culture, detailing the practices of this enigmatic warrior class that dominated ancient Japan between the 12th and 19th centuries. It’s said that Kembu evolved as a discipline to help samurai boost their courage and focus their minds for the rigors of battle.

During the performance you’ll have the chance to admire both traditional and new-style Kembu rituals, each of which involves a performer who will brandish their sword in a series of intricate movements while reciting samurai poems used before heading to the battlefield. You’ll also learn the art of the Japanese folding fan and discover the meaning behind the ceremony of seppuku (ritual suicide), which is also called hara-kiri.

Finish your immersion into samurai culture with a photo session, where you can hold a sword and take a few candid shots with the performers.
Stop At:  
Samurai Kenbu Theater
Make your way to Samurai Kenbu Theater, conveniently located in downtown Kyoto. After removing your shoes and taking your seat, you’re introduced to the Japanese traditional art of Kembu through informative narration on stage. Before each demonstration, you’ll learn about the culture of the samurai, a warrior class that ruled Japan from the 12th to 19th century. In feudal times, samurai were said to perform Kembu to give themselves courage or to achieve mental concentration. During traditional and new-style Kenbu short performances, watch trained masters wield swords and recite short Japanese poems written by samurai before going to battle. Discover the art of folding a fan as a show of respect in Japanese culture. You can also take a simple Japanese sword experience.
Admission Ticket Included
  • Confirmation will be received at time of booking
  • Please arrive at the theater at least 5 minutes before
  • Not wheelchair accessible
  • Near public transportation
  • Infants must sit on laps
  • Not recommended for travelers with back problems
  • Not recommended for pregnant travelers
  • No heart problems or other serious medical conditions
  • It will be a show part in the first half and a casual experience in the second half
  • There is currently no one-hour show
  • Most travelers can participate
  • OPERATED BY Ginbu Co., LTD. (former name: Samurai Kenbu Co., LTD.)

For a full refund, cancel at least 24 hours in advance of the start date of the experience. Learn more about cancellations.

The answers provided below are based on answers previously given by the tour provider to customers’ questions.
What is the policy on face masks and attendee health during Samurai Performance and Casual Experience: Kyoto Ticket?
A:The policies on face masks and attendee health are:

  • Face masks required for travelers in public areas
  • Temperature checks for travelers upon arrival
See all safety measures taken by Samurai Performance and Casual Experience: Kyoto Ticket.
What is the policy on sanitization during Samurai Performance and Casual Experience: Kyoto Ticket?
A:The policies on sanitization are:

  • Hand sanitizer available to travelers and staff
  • Regularly sanitized high-traffic areas
  • Gear/equipment sanitized between use
See all safety measures taken by Samurai Performance and Casual Experience: Kyoto Ticket.
What is the social distancing policy during Samurai Performance and Casual Experience: Kyoto Ticket?
A:The policies on social distancing are:

  • Social distancing enforced throughout experience
  • Contactless payments for gratuities and add-ons
See all safety measures taken by Samurai Performance and Casual Experience: Kyoto Ticket.
What measures are being taken to ensure staff health & safety during Samurai Performance and Casual Experience: Kyoto Ticket?
A:The policies on staff health & safety are:

  • Guides required to regularly wash hands
  • Regular temperature checks for staff
  • Paid stay-at-home policy for staff with symptoms
See all safety measures taken by Samurai Performance and Casual Experience: Kyoto Ticket.
What is the maximum group size during Samurai Performance and Casual Experience: Kyoto Ticket?
A:This activity will have a maximum of 9 travelers.

See all safety measures taken by Samurai Performance and Casual Experience: Kyoto Ticket.

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85 Reviews
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Reviews by Viator travelers

Showing 1-10 of 85 reviews
Great Experience
Saravanan P
, Nov 2019
It was raining heavily outside. Luckily, I booked this tour and enjoyed it very much. It is a trip that I recommend.
Great experience
, Oct 2019
We really enjoyed this performance and learning about the history of the samurai. They were very impressive and we had a great photo opportunity afterwards.
Nice show
, Aug 2019
The show is nice and with lots of information about samurai and other things. Unfortunately is difficult to understand their English since we are not English and their pronunciation make it hard to follow. Overall I d advise it
Nice performance for kids
, Apr 2019
I was expecting something more serious and going deeper into samurai fighting methods and training. There was a lot of talking and less action. Plus some "funny" dialogues. I can recommend it for families with kinds. At the end of show is a photo shoot with the actors.
Fascinating and entertaining
, Jan 2019
A wonderful glimps into the bushido way of the Samurai through art, dance and glimmering of swords. Thank you Samurai Kembo.
The samurai performance in Kyoto was...
Michael S
, Apr 2018
The samurai performance in Kyoto was fantastic. It was at the same place as the samurai lesson. Since I had had an afternoon lesson, I asked if I could just switch my performance to the afternoon and they had no issues with that. The venue was small and intimate and the performers did a great job displaying their physicality. Before each section, an announcer would come out and explain in English what the performance you were about to experience was and its relevance to either Japan's history or to samurai culture. Overall, a great performance well worth the price of admission!
Worth seeing! The performers took...
Sumudu A
, Apr 2018
Worth seeing! The performers took great care to explain the performances to the audience. It would have been helpful to have a pamphlet to help us further.
Our family had a great time at this...
Henning N
, Jan 2018
Our family had a great time at this unique performance. Our kids especially liked learning more about the samurai culture in Japan. The staff had minimal English, but enough for you to understand. Fun for the whole family!
I loved the experience and for the...
, Oct 2017
I loved the experience and for the first time I had a samurai sword in my hands. They took me very kindly many photos. If you travel to Kyoto, I recommend it.
Interesting, moving and at times funny...
, Oct 2017
Interesting, moving and at times funny. A great show.

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