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Miyako From Japan

Experiences & Guided Tours

Mari - guide in Kyoto

Mari & Max Ikeda-Bernard

Experienced Guides and Calligraphy Teacher -
Owners of Miyako from Japan

Greetings everyone, it's Mari and Max here. 


As seasoned national guides, we've enjoyed exploring Japan's hidden gems and getting to know its people. Mari is also a skilled calligraphy teacher who loves sharing her expertise with others. We enjoy strolling around Kyoto, uncovering its secret history, and practicing calligraphy.


Our goal is to provide you with a comprehensive understanding of Japan. We can't wait to meet you in person!

Mari started her career as an office worker but decided to switch career paths to join her husband, Max, who has been a guide for over a decade. With Max's guidance, Mari has gained valuable insights into Japan from a traveler's perspective. Max's passion for guiding has rubbed off on Mari and inspired her to follow in his footsteps. Mari began working as an independent guide in Kyoto, Nara, and Osaka in 2016, and two years ago, she opened her own calligraphy workshop.

As your guide, we prioritize ensuring you have a wonderful and memorable time exploring the city. We take pride in sharing fascinating stories about each destination we visit and strive to become a part of your cherished memories of Japan.


We offer a personalized itinerary that caters to your preferences and interests. Whether you want to see all the popular attractions or take time to appreciate the beauty of a serene garden or immerse yourself in local culture, we are flexible and accommodating. As Kyoto residents, we have access to insider information that cannot be found in guidebooks.


Mari, our experienced calligraphy teacher, is passionate about sharing her knowledge and skills with you. She has practiced calligraphy since she was six years old and profoundly understands the art and its techniques. Mari will guide you in creating artistic strokes and complex characters and help you improve your brush writing skills. If you're interested in viewing her artwork, please visit our gallery page.


Mari can also create a custom calligraphy design if you have a special request. We're happy to accommodate your needs, from lanterns to restaurant menus and tattoos. For more information, don't hesitate to contact us.

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