Our Team

Discover Another Kyoto is a cultural interaction and experience service based in Kyoto’s Keihoku region, created with a vision to revitalise the Keihoku countryside and to usher more of Japan’s city-dwellers and foreign travelers into this special rural part of Japan.

 

The founders of Discover Another Kyoto are a bunch of well-travelled young Japanese urbanites, who, after being fascinated by the Japanese countryside, decided to leave their lives in the mega cities behind and to settle down with a more sustainable lifestyle among the Keihoku mountains.

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Kei Nakayama /
 

I have to say that Kei is a phenomenal host. He's extremely intelligent and personable, and answered all of my (many) questions with thought and clarity.

 

It is no exaggeration to say that I learned more on this trip about Japanese history, language, and culture, than I have from any book.

Jennifer

USA

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 Official guide, interpreter and entrepreneur.

Languages Spoken: Japanese, English, Chinese, Spanish and French

Kei, a master of many hats, knows Kyoto and Japanese history like the back of his hand and is passionate about showing the beauty and culture of his country to the world

 

From travelling around the world twice to completing the “El Camino de Santiago” pilgrimage in Europe, Kei has been travelling extensively within and outside of Japan since his university days. His love for discovery extends to him being a self professed “language and culture” nerd, enthusiastically learning about his own Japanese culture as well as those of others, making him a perfect guide and friend for presenting Japan to you.

 

Besides being a nationally certified English-speaking guide of Japan with more than 500 clients under his belt. Kei is also a simultaneous English-Japanese interpreter who is fluent in more than 5 languages (Chinese, Spanish, French, beginner’s Russian as well), and has been coordinating Intercultural Programs for the Japanese Ministry of Foreign Affairs in the recent years.

 

These day, Kei is busy with promoting travel and living in the Keihoku countryside through his tourism business, which is in partnership with the Commercial and Tourism Bureau of the Kyoto City Municipal office.

 

Intercultural communications though, remain as Kei’s greatest loves, and one of his favourites moments is when he gets to kick, relax and engage in interesting conversations with his guest over a beer after a day of touring.

 

What's important is that Feilang is very knowledgeable, communicative, flexible, cooperative, and easy going!

 

We felt like we were staying at our close friend's house!

Albert

Indonesia

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Feilang Tseng /

Host and Designer

Languages Spoken: Japanese and English
Local host, Designer, Art School Teacher

Feilang is very passionate in helping guests to find something unique in rural Kyoto life-style. She loves interacting with guests, traveling, organizing music events and also scuba diving.

Feilang moved to Keihoku about 10 years ago with her family, and is living in a 250-year-old thatched roof house, deeply respecting local wisdoms and the history of Keihoku.

 

Not only as a resident but also as a designer, she is always looking for new approaches to enhance Keihoku’s attraction by having lots of inspiration from local people and culture.

 

Feilang speaks fluent Japanese and English. She is also a mother of two children. If you come by a family, Feilang would be a perfect host to give you a relaxed time and cozy experiences.

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Akiko Hoshino /

Host, guide, therapist, fire dancer

Languages Spoken: Japanese and English

Born and grown up in Tokyo, lived and studied in her late teens in London UK, Akiko had always been a city girl.

 

While working as a massage therapist for many years in the busy area of Tokyo where people were stressed out working their head off surrounded by concrete jungles, Akiko always asked this question: “What does it take to live a happy, healthy and sustainable life?" 

 

Now Akiko thinks she found the answers since she moved here in Keihoku. Fresh mountain air, clean water, quietness, and harmonious nature.  No stress from traffic jam or packed trains. Presently Akiko enjoys her life fully in Keihoku while she brings up her 4-year-old son.

 

As for her specialty, Akiko is skilled in various massage therapies including shiatsu, Thai, oil treatment and skeletal and posture improvement method. She also provides head spa and reflexology with locally produced essential oils. Akiko also collaborates with the local yoga instructors/chefs/mountain guides to organize a unique retreat program in the area, including providing miso and other fermentation food making classes in Keihoku.

 

She is a host and resident of an accommodation UMA as well. So come and stay at Uma to enjoy the most of Keihoku retreat with Akiko!

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Fumi Nishiyama /

Host, guide, sustainable field architect

Languages Spoken: Japanese and English

Fumi, brimming with curiosity about nature, history, culture and international communication, is a new comer to Keihoku from 2020 spring.He had studied architecture and urban design at the University of Tokyo, Technical University Munich in Germany with his dream to make sustainable and wellness revolution in our society.

 

With lots of travel experiences over 30 countries, and almost all prefectures in Japan, he finally discovered Keihoku as his own field for the future sustainable life style.

Fumi has guided many non-Japanese guests in Kyoto, Nara, Tokyo and other parts of Japan. His open-minded, easy going and soft character always welcome our guests.

Another speciality is Fumi is also a Japanese traditional tea master, so having a tea ceremony over one cup of tea will surely be your memorable experience.

 

If you're musical in any way, you can even jam with Hiro on the guitar!

Ryan Dudley

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Hiro Fukumoto /

Host and Photographer

Languages Spoken: Japanese and English

To describe Hiro in one word, “Wild” might just be the most apt. Hiro is an outdoorsy, funny and music-loving “mountain man” who has backpacked across the world and lived in Australia for two years and has dabbled in all kinds of businesses including carpentry and farming, forest conservation activities to find for a lifestyle where humans and nature can coexist.

 

Originally from Kagoshima, Hiro moved with his family to Keihoku about 6 years ago to start an agricultural project with the local community here. Now He runs a company called Satoyama design trying to design a sustainable community.
 

Hiro speaks fluent Japanese and English and he loves chatting with his guests over a beer. So you like music, dancing, and a relaxed countryside experience, Hiro would be your perfect host.

In addition to being an interpreter and host, Hiro is also a professional photographer who specialises in taking photos of people nature.