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Leisure / Hobbies Spots in Kyoto Area

  • Arashiyama Monkey Park Iwatayama
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    4.5
    2603 Reviews
    Leisure / Hobbies
    Kyoto Kyoutoshi Nishikyou-ku Arashiyamanakaoshitachou 61
    First opened in 1956, this park halfway up Mt. Iwata in Arashiyama Mountain Range is home to some 120 Japanese macaques. The monkeys tend to congregate at the viewing area. Living wild and free to walk about the nature-rich grounds, visitors can easily observe them as they go about their lives. The shop at the mountain top rest area sells peanuts and apples for feeding to the monkeys. Colored by beautiful pink cherry blossoms in spring and fall foliage in autumn, the viewing area offers a sweeping view of Kyoto City. This location is particularly popular with international tourists. Arashiyama Station is the closest station to the park.

    Not sure how to feel about this attraction. It’s a 20 minute walk up a mountain where you are greeted with a lot of monkeys and even more tourists. The monkeys generally leave you alone but I’m...

  • Kyoto International Manga Museum
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    4.0
    596 Reviews
    Leisure / Hobbies
    Karasuma-ku Ikegami Le, Nakagyo-ku, Kyoto-shi, Kyoto
    This manga museum in Nakagyo Ward, Kyoto City, Kyoto, is Japan's largest manga museum. It first opened in 2006. Including valuable works from the Meiji period and the post-WWII period as well as popular modern titles and foreign works, they have almost 300,000 pieces in their collection. One of their showcases is a ''Manga Wall'' with 50,000 volumes of manga arrayed on bookcases that visitors can freely read. The spacious building is the former Tatsuike Elementary School and people can be found everywhere inside or outside on the lawn reading manga. This is a popular location for foreign tourists and couples.

    Im a fan of manga, but unfortunately, cannot read Japanese. If youre like me, I wouldnt especially recommend this museum. Its essentially a big library, but the VAST majority of manga in here are...

  • Toei Kyoto Studio Park
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    4.0
    517 Reviews
    Leisure / Hobbies
    Kyoto Kyoutoshi Ukyou-ku Uzumasahigashihachiokachou 10
    A movie theme park located in Ukyo Ward, Kyoto City which makes portions of the Toei Kyoto film studio open to the public. The park offers a variety of events and attractions, including the chance to see how television programs and movies are filmed on a recreated open set, historical dram sword fight and acting shows, a haunted house, and classes on theatrical sword fighting. The park also hosts restaurants and cafes. People of all ages can enjoy an entire day of fun at Toei Kyoto Studio Park. The park’s variety of opportunities to try out movie and TV related costumes are particularly popular, from simple costumes like those worn in historical dramas that can be put on in 15-20 minutes to photography sessions taken by professional photographers.

    I enjoyed most of their live shows, however, they’re in Japanese. There are schedules of the show posted outside the theater/on the brochure. There are shops and restaurants too. I was able to buy...

  • Yasaka Hall Gion Corner
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    3.0
    519 Reviews
    Leisure / Hobbies
    Kyoto Kyoutoshi Higashiyama-ku Gionmachiminamigawa 570-2 Inside the Yakinikan
    Here you can enjoy seven of Japan's traditional arts in the space of about an hour including Kyomai traditional Kyoto dance, Kyogen comedy theater, Gagaku traditional court music, Bunraku puppet theater, koto music, tea ceremony, and ikebana flower arranging. It is located inside the Yasaka Hall in Gion, Kyoto City, nearby the Gion Kobu Kaburenjo theater. In the lobby you'll find pictures of annual festivals held in ''Kyoto Gokagai (five districts)'' (Gion Kobu, Miyagawa-cho, Ponto-cho, Kamishichiken, Gion Higashi) as well as a Maiko gallery showing the ornamental flower pins worn by the Maiko, their hairstyles, and other small items. This is a famous place for seeing the character of Japan and is popular amongst students on school trips and foreign visitors. It is a five-minute walk from Gion-Shijo Station on the Keihan Line.

    1hr of all-round performance show to cover main varieties of Kyoto traditional leisure/entertainment activities. My 7yo son was able to sit through it all but was a bit bored by the end. Ticket is...

  • Kyoto Botanical Garden
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    4.5
    371 Reviews
    Leisure / Hobbies
    Kyoto Kyoutoshi Sakyou-ku Shimogamohangichou
    Opened in 1924, this is Japan’s oldest public botanical garden. Some 120 thousand plants grow on the garden’s spacious grounds, spanning some 12 thousand varieties. The south side of the garden features the front entrance flower beds blooming with seasonal flowers, a rose garden, and one of the largest greenhouses in Japan, were visitors can enjoy rare tropical plants such as welwitschia and baobab. The north side of the garden includes the virgin Nakaragi Forest and a garden presenting a natural plant ecology as well as cherry trees, Japanese apricot trees, and Japanese irises. The cherry tree blossoms from mid-March to late April are truly splendid and their illumination at night is a must-see. Children of junior high school age and younger as well as senior citizens 70 years of age and older may enter free. Kitayama Station is the closest station to the garden.

    We purposely came here to view momiji by late Nov. and there were quite a number of photo-takers took this chance as well. We were happy to see the colors around the ponds and more than three...

  • Amanohashidate View Land
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    4.0
    435 Reviews
    Leisure / Hobbies
    Kyoto Miyadushi Monju
    This is an amusement park at the summit of Mt. Monju, Miyazu City, Kyoto Prefecture with a viewing platform from which one can see Amanohashidate. Along with attractions including go karts, merry go rounds and a Ferris wheel, the view from the viewing platform restaurant is stunning. There are seven “fork peepholes” that allow one to look between the forks of Amanohashidate, and the Hiryukan through which one can see what looks like a dragon ascending to heaven. There are monorail and lift services to and from the foot of the mountain.

    Take the chair lift , much faster with better view when coming down instead of squeezing with so many people on the monorail. For those who drove , park nearer to the station as it is 500Y with 50Y...

  • Kyoto Gyoen National Garden
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    4.5
    268 Reviews
    Leisure / Hobbies
    Kyoto Kyoutoshi Kamigyou-ku Kyoutogyoen 3
    A 65 hectare garden surrounding Kyoto Gosho and Sento Gosho (Imperial Palaces) which can be freely visited at any time. Before the capital was moved to Tokyo, the area was filled with mansions for imperial household members and court nobles, but after the move, these were demolished and the area was refurbished as grounds for the palace. Later, it was opened up as a public garden. Home to such historic sites as, of course, the palace, Kujo Pond, and the Shu Sui Tei (Tea-ceremony House), the garden is also filled with trees, small rivers, and an abundance of natural beauty. There are tennis courts, sports grounds, and other exercise facilities, and people of all ages can come here to relax and refresh themselves.

    Kyoto had Imperial Palace until 1868 when Emperor and capital moved to Tokyo. Palace is surround by Kyoto Imperial Park aka Kyōto Gyoen. Area contains several attractions in addition to the Imperial...

  • Kyoto City Zoo
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    3.5
    233 Reviews
    Leisure / Hobbies
    Kyoto Kyoutoshi Sakyou-ku Okazakihoushoujichou In Okazaki Park
    A zoo established by the city of Kyoto located in the Okazaki area of Sakyo Ward. This historic zoo was the second to be opened in the country, having begun operating in 1903. The zoo is dedicated to animal breeding and has achieved the first successful breeding in Japan of species such as lions, tigers, western lowland gorillas, and lar gibbons. The zoo houses numerous exhibits only found here, including an Asian elephant herd in the Forest of Elephants and a Gorilla House where visitors can see gorillas learning with the use of touch panels, a first in Japan. In the Otogi no Kuni (Fairy Land) exhibit Animals, used to the presence of humans such as domesticated farm animals can be viewed up close and touched, providing visitors to have fun while learning about the preciousness of life.

    Decided to make a trip down to this zoo though we were staying in Osaka. It was free for my 2 school going kids. Its a clean and renovated zoo. Location was good with so many scenic views to take...

  • Byodoin Museum Hoshokan
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    4.5
    225 Reviews
    Leisure / Hobbies
    Kyoto Uji-shi Uji Renge 116 (Byodoin Keidai)
    This museum was opened in 2001 to preserve the collection from the former treasure house, which had deteriorated. The garden is designated as a famous historic landmark, and the building exterior is designed to blend perfectly with it, with special features like using natural lighting in the interior. In addition to being a registered National and Uji City Important Cultural Asset, it also displays a collection of Heian period onigawara gargoyle roof tiles excavated from archaeological sites.

    The museum is included in ¥ 600 entrance ticket. So dont miss it. We can learn more about the history of Byodoin Temple and Phoenix Hall. Inside the museum many ancient artifacts and collections...

  • Minamiza
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    4.5
    142 Reviews
    Leisure / Hobbies
    Kyoto Prefecture Kyoto Shi Higashiyama Ward Shijyo Ohashi Ebisu
    A theater which has been in operation since the Edo period (1603–1868) located in Higashiyama Ward in Kyoto City. The theater has held kabuki performances for close to 400 years in Shijogawara where kabuki originated from, making it the oldest and most tradition-rich theater in Japan. The current building, four stories above ground and one below, incorporates modern and Momoyama architectural styles and was designated a Tangible Cultural Property in 1996. The theater’s performances of the Kaomise, held each year from the November 30 to the end of December, have become a winter tradition in Kyoto, and the sight of the traditional signboards presenting the performers’ names in Kanteiryu calligraphic style crowding the theater front above the entranceway is renowned.

    We watched “Tōkaidō Yotsuya kaidan” here. Got our tickets last minutes for 5500 Yen per person (cheapest category). We got to sit at the 3rd floor balcony, which is ok but the faces and costumes of...

  • Nishijin Textile Center
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    3.5
    174 Reviews
    Leisure / Hobbies
    Kyoto prefecture Kyoto city Kamigyo-ku Horikawa dori Imadegawa south entrance west side
    This meeting hall in Kamigyo Ward, Kyoto City, Kyoto Prefecture introduces the charm of Japanese clothing, especially Nishijin silk fabrics, and displays related items. The third floor has a show stage on which they hold the extravagant Kimono Show each hour. With the workshops allowing one to watch artisans up close and the reservation handmaking experience activities, there are facilities for one to watch, sow and experience while learning and having fun. There are also Japanese trinkets on sale including clothing sundries and mufflers made of pure Japan-produced silk.

    My wife was a little disappointed. She was hoping for fabric she couldnt get at home in Australia. Nothing extraordinary.

  • Museum of Kyoto
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    3.5
    212 Reviews
    Leisure / Hobbies
    Kyoto Kyoutoshi Nakagyou-ku Sanjoutakakura
    This museum introduces the history and traditions of Kyoto via a variety of means, providing visitors with a comprehensive understanding of Kyoto culture. The permanent exhibit presents the history of Kyoto from the Heian period to the Showa period via three zones, with a focus on fascinating actual Kyoto artifacts such as cultural properties and costumes used in the Gion Festival. The multiple special exhibits held each year are also popular with visitors. The museum’s theater presents masterworks of film relating to Kyoto. The red brick Annex building, an Important Cultural Property constructed in 1906, was originally the Kyoto branch office of the Bank of Japan. The museum’s Roji Tempo area recreates an Edo period street lined with Kyoto merchants’ homes, and here visitors can enjoy dining and shopping at numerous restaurants and shops. Karasuma Oike Station is the closest station to the museum.

    I visited the Kyoto museum without any expectations except to learn something of the local history and culture. What I found when I got there was a fantastic exhibition of the Czech artist Mucha...

  • Umekoji Park
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    4.0
    130 Reviews
    Leisure / Hobbies
    Kyoto Kyoutoshi Shimogyou-ku Kankijichou 56-3
    A park located on the former site of the Japan Freight Railway Company Umekoji Station that was built to commemorate the 1,200th anniversary of the foundation of Heiankyo, the ancient capital of Japan. The parks spacious 13.7 hectare grounds include a lawn surrounded by flowers and trees, a riverbed where families can play in the shallow waters, and a forest designed to recreate an animal biotope. The park is also used for a variety of events. On Saturdays, Sundays, and holidays, a nostalgic street car operates in the park between the Hazesaku Yume and Shiden plazas. Kyoto’s first aquarium was opened in the park in 2012, and one of the largest railroad museums in Japan was also opened here in 2016. Walk 15 minutes west from Kyoto Station.

    Local Park, they do like a local market every once in a while, which was incredible. Also has the train history area and the garden within it which is absolutely gorgeous. Loved just walking through...

  • Kyoto Municipal Museum of Art, Annex
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    4.0
    180 Reviews
    Leisure / Hobbies
    Kyoto Kyoutoshi Sakyou-ku Okazakisaishoujichou 13 within Okazaki Park
    This museum is in Sakyo Ward, Kyoto City. Originally the Kyoto Municipal Auditorium East Hall, an annex of the Kyoto Kaikan Hall, it opened as a museum in 2000. With a characteristic Japanese-style facade, it holds art related events including exhibitions of paintings, sculptures, and literature.

    The main hall of Kyoto Municipal Museum of Art was expected for re-opening by mid-March 2020 after large scale renovation works. Be ready to visit this museum in coming spring.

  • Uji City The Tale of Genji Museum
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    4.0
    141 Reviews
    Leisure / Hobbies
    Kyoto Ujishi Uji Higashiuchi 45-26
    This museum located in Uji City, Kyoto Prefecture collects and displays materials pertaining to the Genji Monogatari (Tale of Genji), the full-length novel by Murasaki Shikibu. Inside, it is divided into video exhibition rooms including the Heian-no-Ma which introduces the world of the Genji Monogatari and the life of Japanese nobles with models and video, and the Uji-no-Ma, which takes the theme of Uji Jujo (The 10 Quires of Uji) in the third part of the Genji Monogatari, which was set in Uji. There are also a teahouse offering Japanese sweets and a shop selling merchandise related to the Genji Monogatari.

    This attractive modern museum reveals the ancient and elegant world of the Heian period of Japan through interactive displays, full screen sets and models. The focus? Just one:The Tale of Genji...

  • Kyoto Station Building
    Leisure / Hobbies
    Kyoto Prefecture Kyoto City Shimogyo-ku Karasumaru Saltwater Road Down Le Higashi Salokoji-machi 901
    This is a large station building with 16 floors over and three floors underground that houses JR Kyoto Station - the entrance to Kyoto. Along with Kyoto Station itself there are a range of facilities including Hotel Granvia Kyoto, Kyoto Theater, Isetan department store, specialist shops, an art gallery, a rooftop garden, and Kyoto ramen alley. The central concourse is a roof-covered atrium, and there is a sky path 45 meters above ground. The famous 30-meter-long 171-step staircase is illuminated at night.
  • Amanohashidate Beach
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    4.0
    108 Reviews
    Leisure / Hobbies
    Kyoto Miyadushi Monju
    Approximately a seven-minute walk from the Amanohashidate Station of the Kyoto Tango Railway, and about a 10-minute drive from the Miyazu Amanohashidate Interchange off of the Kyoto Jukan Expressway, this beach is located in a westerly direction towards the ocean, starting from the north side of the Daitenkyo Bridge. One of the attractive features of this beach is its direct accessibility from the Shotenkyo Bridge through the many minshuku and ryokan lodgings. The swimming season opens every year in mid-July, filling the beach with visitors who are enjoying the white sand, clear blue water and the green trees that dot the Amanohashidate, which is lighted up at night every year for a limited time only.

    Beach is clean but still can find some the jellyfish floating However this beach had rescue personnel sitting there which gave a safety feeling it has jumping platform installed which was quite...

  • Maizuru Brick Park
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    3.5
    113 Reviews
    Leisure / Hobbies
    Kyoto Maidurushi Kitasui 1039-2
    A historic site located a 10-minute walk from JR Higashi-Maizuru Station. This collection of 12 red brick buildings served as an ordinance warehouse for the former Japanese Navy from the Meiji through the Taisho period; eight of these buildings have been designated Important Cultural Properties. In order to make use of these structures, the site was opened up as a sightseeing and exchange facility by Maizuru City in 2012. Today, it is open to the general public as an event hall and museum with exhibits on the history of the former Japanese Navy. There is also a sightseeing cruise facility and a restaurant which serves the same curry as is enjoyed by the modern day Japan Maritime Self-Defense Force.

    It was 4:30pm when we arrived the museum. Glad we bought the tickets (300 yen) as the exhibits are fascinating. Worth to visit.

  • Ryozen Museum of History
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    4.0
    62 Reviews
    Leisure / Hobbies
    Kyoto Kyoutoshi Higashiyama-ku Seikanjiryousanchou 1
    A museum located across from Kyoto Ryozen Gokoku Shrine and south of the Kodai-ji Zen Temple. The museum opened in 1970 as Japan’s first dedicated to the holistic researching of Japanese history from the end of the Edo period to the Meiji Restoration. The museum collects, researches, and displays the personal effects of historic personages and other artifacts from the period regardless of which side of the Restoration they were on. The museum exhibits pieces from among its collection of over 5,000 objects based on a given theme.

    This isnt a good or bad review. Just a warning to English speakers. On our first attempt to visit, we hiked the long walk uphill from the bus-stop in 34° heat. The museum was closed. We later found...

  • Hosomi Museum
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    4.0
    74 Reviews
    Leisure / Hobbies
    Kyoto Kyoutoshi Sakyou-ku Okazakisaishoujichou 6-3
    An art museum primarily dedicated to ancient Japanese art located in Sakyo Ward, Kyoto City. The museum first opened in 1998. The museum displays pieces collected by three generations of the Hosomi family, which was started by industrialist and Japanese art collector Kokoan Hosomi. The museum’s collection spans some 1,000 pieces and covers virtually every genre and period of Japanese art, including Shinto and Buddhist art, tea ceremony art, and Edo paintings. The museum holds a variety of special exhibits. It also houses a tea room and shop and is adjoined by a café, making it a popular place for art lovers.

    Small but exhibitions with exquisite taste. Beautiful woodcuts and paintings in an intimate setting. Well worth your time to spend hours there without being rushed or hurried.

Kyoto Areas

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Its wooden tea houses, shuffling geisha, and spiritual sights have seen Kyoto hailed as the heart of traditional Japan, a world apart from ultramodern Tokyo. Despite being the Japanese capital for over a century, Kyoto escaped destruction during World War II, leaving behind a fascinating history which can be felt at every turn, from the fully gold-plated Kinkakuji Temple down to traditional customs such as geisha performances and tea ceremonies, which are still practiced to this day.

Kyoto Photo Album

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