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Renting a kimono in Kyoto

Renting a Kimono in Kyoto

A kimono are the national dress of Japan. It is a stunning traditional Japanese garment with wide sleeves and tied in front with a sash called an obi. We jumped at the opportunity to rent a kimono whilst we were in Kyoto. 

In terms of rental store choice, we opted for Vesara Kimono Rental. They have great reviews on google and we were able to book them the day before. Plus, one of their locations were at Kyoto Station. This was ideal for our plans to visit the Fushimi Inari Shrine. 

Online kimono reservation

VASARA Kimono Rental Kyoto Station Store
13 Higashikujo Higashisannocho, Minami Ward, Kyoto, 601-8004, Japan.

We booked a session for 10am and confirming an initial amount of  6,380 yen (with the 8% tax included) online for the Couple standard option. This was about £45 and has now changed to do check the website out.

There are a wide variety of stores offering kimono rentals so do look around. I did like Vasara, but I would try somewhere else next time.  

Kimono Renting Day and Process

We arrived at the “reception area” located inside “Nippon Travel Agency”. This was still technically connected to the station but was outside the building. We were a tad confused because this was technically inside another store. But when we got there we knew we were in the right place when we saw a lovely lady in a kimono at a stand. 

Once the admin part was complete, we were directed to the dressing room. This was in another separate building not far from the station. 

The dressing room 

We arrive at the dressing room, and there and we could see a few other people getting their finishing touches to their outfits. The dressing room was quite compact with about 3 different dressing rooms which were divided by drapes of fabric. 

I think based on the location we chose, the variety of kimonos were quite limiting. There were about 2 railings of designs to choose from, divided into price brackets.

I’ve read how at other stores they had over 500 designs so this was a bit of a surprise. Although, I’m quite an indecisive person so it might have been a good thing that there weren’t as many options because we could have been there for a while.

The kimono package

We went for the standard package, s\which included any 2 standard kimonos, a travel bag and a standard hairstyle. Anything above this option we had to pay extra for. Which is probably a better option to go for because on the website it states if you pay for a premium package but prefer a lower standard design then you could not refund the charges for the premium package. 

Out and about

Its a lot of fun going out and about and appreciating Japanese culture in a kimonos. If you’re looking for places to visit whilst in a kimono in Kyoto, read my top 5 places you should visiting in Kyoto. 

Here are some photos of our day out in our Kimonos, visiting the Fushimi Inari Taisha Shrine and Nijō Castle

Tips on renting kimonos

  1. Dress comfortably – There are a lot of layers to the kimono and can add a lot of weight to your body. So if you’re doing a lot of walking, I would suggest you take a pair of trainers with you so you can switch out of. 
  2. Pack lightly – The store does give you a small traditional bag to put your belongings in but its quite small. So only bring necessary belongings with you like your phone and money. 
  3. Make sure you know what time you need to return the Kimonos. – A lot of places have a cut off time for when you need to return the kimono by. There is a late fee as well so don’t get too carried away. 

I think renting kimonos are a wonderful way to explore Japan in a differently light. It was tiring for sure, but completely worth it. We got a lot of complements from friendly strangers.

Hope you enjoyed this post and stay tuned for more travel and lifestyle content.

Let me know in the comments if you have ever rented kimonos or are planning to in the future! 

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