Samurai Sword Cutting Experience in Kyoto – Tameshigiri

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¥9800 / person
¥7840 / person   (+ tax)
Book now with the coupon code to get discounts!

Try a real samurai katana in our Kyoto Tameshigiri Test Cutting Workshop!

Tameshigiri, also known as the Japanese art of test cutting was popularized in the Edo Period and is the ultimate samurai experience! Test your skills on tatami cutting mats during your training with a swordmaster.

Make your childhood dream of being a real samurai come true with a real sword and a traditional hakama at our tameshigiri workshop – only available at The Samurai & Ninja Museum Kyoto.

The Samurai & Ninja Museum Kyoto is a unique, experience-based museum that lets you get up close and personal with history. Our Samurai Sword Cutting Experience in Kyoto – Tameshigiri lets you become a modern-day samurai-in-training for a day!

Kyoto sword cutting experience tameshigiri

Kyoto sword cutting experience tameshigiri

Book with us online to reserve a slot now!

All sessions are private due to Covid-19.

Samurai Sword Experience for Kids and Families Ticket

Lasts approximately 120 minutes.

Your Samurai Experience includes:

  1. A Real Samurai Sword (Katana)
    • You will be using a real katana to cut a tatami mat under the supervision of the museum staff.
  2. Tatami Mat
    • While there are a number of different materials used for test cutting, this lesson will be using bamboo tatami mats.
  3. Sword Lesson and Practice
    • You will be given a short sword lesson or review depending on your existing skills. The hands-on instructions will cover all the basics before proceeding to the cutting practice.
  4. Hakama
    • A traditional samurai outfit will be provided for you during the whole workshop. Our hakamas are unisex and come in a variety of sizes for everyone in the family!
  5. Basic Ticket
    1. Guided tour of the Samurai & Ninja Museum Kyoto:
      • Learn about the history of the samurais and ninjas from our knowledgeable tour guides! The tours are available in English, Chinese, and Japanese. This item is optional should children not want to join.
    2. Ninja experience:
      • Learn how to throw ninja stars and use a blowgun!
    3. Samurai experience:
      • Try on full samurai armor for your souvenir pictures.
      • Samurai Sword Show Demonstration
        • Don’t miss a performance by an experienced swordmaster! This awe-inspiring show is performed every day for our guests.

Kyoto sword cutting experience tameshigiri

Kyoto sword cutting experience tameshigiri by Kyoto Samurai & Ninja Museum


  1. At least 15-18 years old:
    • Parental supervision
    • At least 150 cm tall
  2. Participants over 18 years old do not have a height requirement.

samurai ninja katana sword tameshigiri

Kyoto sword cutting experience tameshigiri

What happens during the workshop?

Before beginning the lessons and practice, you will be putting on hakama or samurai armor, exclusively available at the Samurai & Ninja Museum Kyoto. You will be using a real samurai sword or katana during practice and during the trial cutting.

The bamboo mat or tatami used for the exercise will resemble the same strength and density as a human neck, making the experience feel just like samurai training! The tameshigiri is a form of practice for the samurai in old Japan (and now you) and is a way to test the edge of their blades.

Although this experience will focus on the tatami, tameshigiri is also practiced on thin steel, rice straws, and a variety of other materials.

Kyoto sword cutting experience tameshigiri

If the weather is good, you will have the sword lesson experience in a traditional Japanese garden as pictured above. If not, the workshop will be held indoors in the historic townhouse.

The swordmaster will be going through the techniques you will need to make a successful cut. You will be given time to practice your posture and stance before proceeding to use your katana on the tatami.

You will be instructed in English or Japanese, depending on your preference. After the workshop, you will proceed to the inclusive tour of the Samurai & Ninja Museum Kyoto.

This workshop has a minimum age requirement of 15 years old. Participants aged 15 to 18 years will also need to have parental supervision or a guardian during their workshop, as well as a minimum height of 150 cm.

If you are over 18 years old, there will be no minimum height or supervision required.

Book your Tameshigiri Sword Cutting Workshop on this page!

About the Samurai & Ninja tour

Explore our collection of ancient artifacts and historical samurai swords and ninja weapons from feudal Japan. You will even get up-close looks at the uncanny replicas inspired by the Sengoku Period up to the Tokugawa Shogunate. The Samurai & Ninja museum is Japan’s largest experimental museum and offers unique experiences where you can tour around the medieval exhibits while wearing a kimono, yukata, or samurai armor – a fitting combination for the time period you’ll be exploring. Aside from this, there are also authentic Japanese tea ceremonies and Zen meditation workshops available for individuals and groups. The Samurai & Ninja Museum tour is available all year-round in English, Chinese, and Japanese.

The Samurai Experience

The samurais may have disappeared or integrated into the modern age of Japan, but their legacy lives on. Experience their legendary tales through the tours guided by the knowledgeable staff at our museum! Not only that, but you’ll also get a glimpse of what it was like to be one of the most prestigious ruling classes of old Japan. Bear the honor of the samurai as you learn how to hold and sheath a katana, just like the samurai and their two swords – one for the enemy, and one for their honorable punishment.

You will be trying out a lightweight replica armor! This can easily be worn by kids and everyone in the family with no problem. The armors are meant to fit multiple sizes and are easily adjustable. You will also be putting on a metal samurai helmet and use a model katana sword!

This experience is the perfect opportunity to take pictures to take home as a souvenir from your trip.

The Ninja Experience

Experience the thrill of being one of the famously mysterious covert agents in medieval Japan! The ninjas are some of the most intimidating and formidable characters from the Sengoku Period or the Warring Stated Period to the Edo Period. The traditions and practices of the ninjas may have lost their glory days, but the Samurai & Ninja Museum Kyoto keeps the history alive.

Just like in the movies, our ninja experience lets you try out the famous ninja stars! Also known as shuriken, these are small hand blades that are used for throwing. But don’t worry – our ninja stars are perfectly safe.

The second part of your experience will also include using the ninja blowgun, also known as the fukiya. These can also be referred to as blow darts! You can have a friendly competition among your group during a target practice game too.

All of the rooms and exhibits at the Samurai & Ninja Museum are designed to embody the Sengoku Period, also known as the Warring States Period in Japan. This era was the time when the samurai held extraordinary power over the politics in the country, enough to eventually trigger the reunification of Japan. Your adventure with us will transform you and your friends and family into a modern rendition of the ancient legendary warriors. Our armors come in unisex styles and a variety of sizes for everyone, including children!

The Samurai & Ninja Kyoto also hosts its activities outside the museum upon request. All you need to do is contact us so we can arrange for our affiliated dojos! Don’t forget to check out the museum gift shop for a souvenir. There are also antique samurai swords and armor for sale if you’re an avid collector, along with ninja tabi-socks.

The Samurai & Ninja Museum is a family-friendly establishment that provides enjoyable activities for people of all ages!

A Brief History of the Samurai

The samurai are known as the best warriors in the world in their time, and stories about them still circulate to this day, staying as one of the most popular aspects of Japanese history and culture. These warriors were known for their bravery, military tactical prowess, and the “Bushido” or code of honor.

The samurai class rose to power around the 11th century, leading to the feudal age of Japan. They held control over the country and the Imperial court as one of the most powerful and intimidating classes until the abolishment of the feudal system in 1868. Since then, the samurai culture has greatly influenced modern Japanese society, with ideals of honor, respect, and loyalty deeply ingrained into ordinary everyday lives.

The samurai were known to wield a variety of weapons from bows and arrows to swords. One of the most well-known weapons of the samurai is the katana. The katana is an unrivaled quality sword and considered the most deadly and efficient weapon during battle. And although the weapons evolved throughout the time periods, the samurai kept the katana close, believing that it held the soul of the bearer. They also carried a short sword or knife known as a tachi. Wearing a katana and a tachi combination was called daisho, which became the hallmark of the Samurai.  The two swords represented the path of the samurai: The katana was the symbol for fighting a righteous battle, and the tachi was a reminder of personal honor.

As the samurai class dissolved into modern society, their previous skills and education were passed through generations. This lead to the creation of some of the most successful Japanese companies and industries. Tactical skills were applied to managerial positions, and practical skills directly influenced the high-quality manufactured goods in the country. One of the most notable products is the unrivaled Japanese knife, which applied the same techniques and methods as when the katanas were made.

Skip the lines and book Samurai and Ninja Ticket with us online!

Simply fill the form at the top of this page to schedule a tour and wait for a confirmation email from us. We hope to see you soon!

Need to cancel or reschedule? 


When is the Samurai & Ninja Museum open?

Our museum is open with tours available every day from 10:30 am to 8 pm.

Is there a minimum age for the workshop?

All participants in the tameshigiri workshop should be at least 15 to 18 years of age with parental supervision and a minimum height of 150 cm.

What is the difference between the tameshigiri workshop and the samurai sword training ticket?

The tameshigiri workshop uses a real katana while the samurai sword training for adults focuses on a non-contact martial art called “Iaido”.

Will the tours, activities, and lessons be in English?

Yes! Our museum staff is fluent in English, but can also provide assistance in Chinese and Japanese should you prefer.

Are the exhibits real artifacts?

Each item in the museum has been authenticated and is maintained well for your viewing pleasure. The items used for the experiences, however, are models and duplicates to ensure the safety of our guests and the artifacts in our collection.

Can I buy a real sword like a katana?

Yes! We sell authentic samurai swords at our museum. You can talk to us during your visit or contact us online using the emails listed at the end of this page.

What is the best way to experience the Samurai & Ninja Museum?

Our tameshigiri workshop is the only one of its kind offered in Kyoto, and is the best for you if you want a hands-on experience with using a katana! This also includes the basic ticket for free, letting you explore the rest of the Samurai & Ninja Museum as well.

Do I need to book in advance?

We accept walk-in guests but we highly recommend booking in advance before your trip especially during peak seasons to avoid the crowd. Keep this in mind when you’re traveling in early April and mid-November!

Do you have a gift shop?

Yes! We offer a variety of souvenirs along with real samurai swords, replicas, and antique samurai armor.

Does the experience include a real katana?

Yes! A real katana will be used for the workshop to make the test-cutting work. This is our only workshop that offers this experience, and it is also the only one of its kind in Kyoto.

Can I wear anything besides the hakama/samurai outfit?

Yes! You, along with young boys and girls in your group can opt to wear a ninja uniform instead without any additional fees. If you came from Maikoya Kyoto in your kimono, you can inform us if you wish to keep wearing it during your time with us.

Check out our other workshops and classes!

Samurai Sword Training for ADULTS

Samurai & Ninja Museum Basic Ticket

Ninja Experience in Kyoto for Adults SPECIAL Authentic Ninja Training Lesson


Jonathan Handke
Jonathan Handke
10:31 17 Mar 20
It’s a must visit if you’re in Kyoto. The guides are absolutely amazing and speak good English. They even have a fully fledged samurai which gives you a brief show with his katana!read more
Edmund Rosewright
Edmund Rosewright
10:41 10 Mar 20
This was a great experience for my family and I. We got to wear armor, play with weapons, and learn alot about Japanese history. Everything was in English. Our tour guide Yuko was enthusiastic and awesome. I'd definitely recommend this place to anyone visiting Kyoto as a more
Adly Almanzo Adnan
Adly Almanzo Adnan
06:48 02 Mar 20
An excellent experience I would recommend. Not just for those with interest in samurai and ninja but to learn about Japan's history with the samurai in general! Trying on the armour was an IG-worthy moment and I actually learnt a lot about ninja and samurai! 2 thumbs up!read more
Kelly Moore
Kelly Moore
02:22 11 Feb 20
Worth every penny!!! My partner and I did the value pack. First, we were dressed in traditional Japanese attire (kimono), then we attended a traditional tea ceremony. After that, we were dressed in samurai gear, learned about their history, and then learned about ninjas and threw ninja stars. At the end, we observed a professional swordsman. Everyone was extremely knowledgeable, entertaining and funny, and hospitable. Our favorite part was the tea ceremony. The hostess was absolutely incredible. Book your visit online ahead of time, and make sure you know if you need to go to the museum or the tea ceremony first. They're only about 5 min apart by walk. Be careful- the museum is mixed in with a large, lively market. We actually showed up a few minutes late because we didn't fully prepare to find the place in all the hustle. Both places have maps to help you get to the other location. Please don't pass this up!read more
Stephanie Hunt
Stephanie Hunt
05:51 16 Jan 20
Loved this experience! Great balance of information and history, dressing up as samurai was fun and trying to throw ninja stars and blow darts was awesome. Reasonably priced and we didn't have to wait at all. Took about an hour all more
21:24 14 Jan 20
Great place to learn about the history of the samurai & ninja. A great place to entertain the kids too as we got to dress up and practice throwing ninja stars and blow darts. We were also lucky to see a martial arts demonstration. Spent a couple of hours here.Glad we came here before visiting the more
Kianosh Keyvani
Kianosh Keyvani
23:38 05 Jan 20
My husband and I had so much fun here. We chose the tatami mat cutting package. Sensei was patient and encouraging in teaching us how to use a katana and some basic techniques. The rest of the staff were really friendly and informative in samurai history as they walked us through the artifacts. It was just a great more
Isaac Petrie
Isaac Petrie
05:24 03 Jan 20
The guide was fantastic and we had a great time. It was really informative. Throwing shuriken, blowing darts and dressing as a samurai was a blast. Would more
Nikita Gohil
Nikita Gohil
04:21 25 Dec 19
An incredible experience! Got to witness proper samurai fighting and even attempt to try on samurai gear ourselves! We got to throw ninja stars and try blow darts too! The history tour was also very educating and entertaining. Also the staff was very friendly!read more
Brett Vannier
Brett Vannier
13:55 07 Dec 19
Doesn't look like much from the outside, don't be fooled. This place is awesome and worth every penny. I paid extra to cut tatami mat with a real sword. It was a legit 300 year old samurai sword. They are also extremely English more
Natalie Golding
Natalie Golding
18:47 07 Oct 19
A lighthearted introduction to Japan's alluring history of samurai and ninjas. As well as sorting the fact from the fiction using a combination of written and spoken guides. The lovely guide we had also introduced the group to some of the lesser known elements of Japanese feudal history before we were all treated to a display from a samurai and then hands on ninja lessons (including throwing stars and blowpipes!) A tongue-in-cheek experience, but genuinely interesting for kids and adults alike - a great rainy day more
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    Kyoto Samurai & Ninja Museum

    The Samurai & Ninja Museum Kyoto is one of the leading samurai museums in Japan, with a wide range of displays from all throughout Japan’s rich history. We are the only experience-based museum that specializes in providing in-depth and immersive activities that provide our visitors with new perspectives on Japanese history. We have displays ranging from armors and weapons of the great samurai warriors and the mystical ninjas to everyday tools and artifacts from medieval and ancient Japan. Our souvenir gift shop features replica swords, tabi socks, and tabi shoes.  We provide guided tours every day, lead by friendly staff who are fluent in English, Chinese, and Japanese. Join us as you explore the glorious history of the legendary samurais and the mysterious ninjas!

    Contact Us

    Tel: 075-585-5410         Email:



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