I heard about a service called the “Yokohama Haikara Sakura Tour” and decided to experience it myself. The tour started from Yokohama Kimono Station, where I got to choose from over 100 kimonos. It was recommended that I try a hakama as it’s more retro and matches the rickshaw. A very professional staff chose a matching obi (belt), accessories, shoes, and a bag for me. I was dressed and ready to go in just about twenty minutes.
After you’ve changed your fashion to the Haikara style, it’s time for a rickshaw ride! Suzuki Seiji, rickshaw driver and CEO of Yokohama Omotenashiya, was waiting for me outside and the tour started from the picturesque neighborhood of Yamashita Park. Suzuki, a.k.a. Su-san, is currently the only rickshaw driver in Yokohama, escorting guests to the city’s iconic sites while amusing them with friendly banter. Su-san told me he used to work for Nissan but left to pursue a slower, retro-style life.
“Cherry blossoms in Yokohama’s historic areas are not very flashy, but they match the old streets and buildings, and add to the charm,” Su-san says with a smile. You can choose from a thirty to ninety-minute course passing cherry blossoms in the scenic Yamashita Park area, riverside in the Motomachi area and also the Yamate area. I would say, even without cherry blossoms, I could fully enjoy this unique, memorable tour. With the rickshaw, kimono and cherry blossoms paired with Yokohama’s cityscape, I bet your photos will get a surprising number of “likes” on your social media sites!
Yokohama Haikara Sakura Tour (includes rickshaw ride, hakama rental and fitting fee)
30-min course: ¥13,500 single, ¥12,000/person (double)
60-min course: ¥18,000 single, ¥15,000/person (double)
90-min course: ¥22,500 single, ¥18,000/person (double)
横濱おもてなし家 Yokohama Omotenashiya
横濱きものステーション Yokohama Kimono Station
Nakaku, Yamashitacho 1, Silk Center M1F, ROOM 134