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KyotoJapan

Enjoy a traditional tea ceremony, feed wild monkeys and explore World Heritage-listed temples and shrines in this historically rich Japanese city.

Kyoto, on the Japanese island of Honshu, has been a hub of religious activity and political power since the eighth century. It was once the capital of Japan and retains many of the temples and palaces built within this period. Step back in time to imperial Japan as you explore the city’s many World Heritage Sites such as the Kiyomizu Temple. Kyoto is also renowned for its landscaped gardens, many of which are based on designs dating back hundreds of years.

The wealth of cultural history in Kyoto can be overwhelming and it can be difficult to know where to start. Take the Philosopher’s Walk to orient yourself around some of Kyoto’s historic sights, such as the Eikando Temple. The walk takes in three major temples as well as several smaller temples and shrines, boutique shopping areas and restaurants where you can sample the traditional Japanese multicourse dinner, kaiseki. Cherry blossoms line the walk during spring, and in the fall, the area comes alive with the brilliant reds of maple trees.

Central Kyoto offers a combination of modern and traditional delights. Ride up the Kyoto Tower for a 360-degree view over the city from 330 feet (100 meters) up. Explore the Nishiki Market, lined with restaurants, and fresh produce and street food stalls. See giant salamanders and local river fish at the Kyoto Aquarium.

At one of the regular festivals held in the city, taste some of the food brought to Kyoto from all over Japan to please the Emperor, watch traditional crafts being made, take a lesson in saké brewing and experience the culture of Japan.

Lovers of Japanese literature will enjoy the 17th-century Katsura Imperial Villa, built to resemble the fictional setting of the 11th-century novel The Tale of Genji.

Tourism is a large part of Kyoto’s economy and there are some unique attractions such as hand feeding wild snow monkeys at Arashiyama Monkey Park. Kyoto has a welcoming atmosphere, incredible natural beauty and layered history.

Kyoto Travel Guide Video

Where to stay in Kyoto

Top Hotels in Kyoto

RIHGA Royal Hotel Kyoto
RIHGA Royal Hotel Kyoto
4 out of 5
1 Taimatsu-cho, Shiokoji-sagaru, HigashiHorikawa-dori, Shimogyo-ku, Kyoto, Kyoto
The price is ¥7,688 per night from Feb 7 to Feb 8

Located in Central Kyoto, this hotel is within a 10-minute walk of Kyoto Tower and Kyoto Aquarium. Kyoto Railway Museum and Nishiki Market are also within 2 ...

4.4/5Excellent! (2,788 reviews)

"Location is great and the room was pretty nice. Some grime in the bathroom."…"

Reviewed on Dec 28, 2020

RIHGA Royal Hotel Kyoto
Daiwa Royal Hotel Grande Kyoto
Daiwa Royal Hotel Grande Kyoto
4 out of 5
15 Nishi-Iwamotocho, Higashi-kujo, Kyoto, Kyoto
The price is ¥7,318 per night from Jan 29 to Jan 30

Located in Central Kyoto, this hotel is within 1 mi (2 km) of Kyoto TERRSA, Kyoto Tower, and Higashi Honganji Temple. Sanjusangendo Temple and Toji Temple are ...

4.7/5Exceptional! (1,345 reviews)

"The international/bilingual speaking staff was helpful and attentive to helping me locate activities and transportation. If you do not have a lot of luggage, it is a nice short walk from the train station. Did you have to take public transportation to most of the shrines temples and other popular ..."…"

Reviewed on Jan 8, 2021

Daiwa Royal Hotel Grande Kyoto
Hotel Granvia Kyoto
Hotel Granvia Kyoto
4.5 out of 5
JR Kyoto Station, Karasuma Chuo-guchi, Karasuma-dori, Shimogyo, Kyoto, Kyoto
Free Cancellation
The price is ¥10,265 per night from Feb 18 to Feb 19

Located in Central Kyoto, this luxury hotel is within a 10-minute walk of Kyoto Tower and Higashi Honganji Temple. Sanjusangendo Temple and Kyoto Aquarium are ...

4.6/5Wonderful! (1,292 reviews)
reat location

"The location was excellent as it is above Kyoto station. You can travel out to all major attraction easily from the hotel. The swimming pool need admission which is not great and children could only swim in the morning at allotted timing."…"

Reviewed on Aug 22, 2020

Hotel Granvia Kyoto
Lowest nightly price found within the past 24 hours based on a 1 night stay for 2 adults. Prices and availability subject to change. Additional terms may apply.

Vacation Rentals in Kyoto

MIMARU KYOTO SHINMACHI SANJO
MIMARU KYOTO SHINMACHI SANJO
3.5 out of 5
105, Machigashiracho, Nakagyo-ku, Kyoto, Kyoto
The price is ¥8,114 per night from Feb 2 to Feb 3

Located in Central Kyoto, this aparthotel is within a 10-minute walk of Mikane Shrine, Nishiki Market, and Shijo Omiya. Nijō Castle and Kawaramachi are also ...

4.8/5Exceptional! (243 reviews)

"This property was so well designed and built and we really loved staying here with our family of 5. From the sliding doors that cover the windows and the kitchenette to the toys and play area in the lobby for our kids, we will absolutely be staying at Mimaru properties any time we can. My kids loved ..."…"

Reviewed on Nov 21, 2020

MIMARU KYOTO SHINMACHI SANJO
nol kyoto sanjo
nol kyoto sanjo
3 out of 5
700, Osakazaimokucho, Nakagyoku, Kyoto, Kyoto
The price is ¥16,527 per night from Feb 1 to Feb 2

Located in Central Kyoto, this aparthotel is within a 10-minute walk of Nishiki Market, Kawaramachi, and Kyoto International Manga Museum. Pontocho and Shijo ...

5/5Exceptional! (2 reviews)

"細部まで洗練されていて趣があり、とても良いサービスでした。"…"

Reviewed on Dec 21, 2020

nol kyoto sanjo
MIMARU KYOTO NISHINOTOIN TAKATSUJI
MIMARU KYOTO NISHINOTOIN TAKATSUJI
2.5 out of 5
782 Honryusuicho, Shimogyo-ku, Kyoto, Kyoto
The price is ¥8,925 per night from Feb 2 to Feb 3

Located in Central Kyoto, this aparthotel is within a 15-minute walk of Shijo Omiya and Nishiki Market. Kawaramachi and Nijō Castle are also within 1 mi (2 km). ...

4.8/5Exceptional! (186 reviews)

"As new property, extremely clean and plenty of room for family. Very comfortable and handy to all amenities. Very enjoyable stay."…"

Reviewed on Mar 22, 2020

MIMARU KYOTO NISHINOTOIN TAKATSUJI
Lowest nightly price found within the past 24 hours based on a 1 night stay for 2 adults. Prices and availability subject to change. Additional terms may apply.

Popular places to visit in Kyoto

Top things to do in Kyoto

Reviews of Kyoto

4.8

Top Destination

5 - Excellent
1580
5 - Excellent 78.41191066997519%
4 - Good
398
4 - Good 19.751861042183624%
3 - Okay
31
3 - Okay 1.5384615384615385%
2 - Disappointing
4
2 - Disappointing 0.19851116625310175%
1 - Terrible
2
1 - Terrible 0.09925558312655088%

5/5 - Excellent

Jennie

Jun 6, 2020

Love Kyoto!! Definitely recommend fir first time Japan travelers.

5/5 - Excellent

Verified traveler

Apr 3, 2020

very easy to get around and visit all the sites in the area, trains and buses run regularly throughout the day, so you never have very long to wait for one to come along

4/5 - Good

RB

Mar 26, 2020

Quiet at the time of visit. A beautiful place.

5/5 - Excellent

Verified traveler

Mar 20, 2020

I would love to live here.

4/5 - Good

Verified traveler

Mar 18, 2020

The city itself is great unfortunately didn't have enough time to explore the entire city. There are a TON of temples and shrines to visit in Kyoto, kind of off putting when most of the good ones are "Pay to enter," when others in the country are not

5/5 - Excellent

Verified traveler

Mar 18, 2020

Kyoto was a lovely place to visit. There is so much to see here. The traditional neighborhoods and bamboo homes are scenic. The city is safe and pleasant.

Cities near Kyoto