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The Complete Kyoto Travel Guide: Top Sights to See & Eat

Kyoto, one of our favourite cities in the Kansai region, is a stunning travel destination best known for its rich history and traditional culture. It is home to many gorgeous heritage sites, natural gardens, temples and shrines. If you are keen to understand more about both the traditional, as well as the modern Japanese cultures, this is no doubt the best place for you to visit!



Top Sights to See in Kyoto, Japan



Kinkaku-ji, Kyoto, Japan

Kinkaku-ji - Beautiful Golden Temple with a Mirror Pond in Front


Visit Kinkaku-ji today and take your own official Kyoto's postcard picture in front of the Golden Pavilion now! This temple is one of the most visited landmarks in the city. The golden architecture is situated beside a large mirror pond, offering a beautiful shimmering reflection in such stunning picture-perfect setting. This place will look totally different in seasons, especially in Sakura season, autumn, as well as winter covered in snow. Therefore, make sure you come back at the right time!


Arashiyama Bamboo Forest, Kyoto, Japan

Arashiyama Bamboo Forest - A Walking Path in an Natural Setting


Immerse yourself in the beauty of this enchanting bamboo forest while you are following the walking path in Arashiyama. This natural attraction allows you to escape the bustling city and enter into another peaceful world. We suggest that you should visit Arashiyama in early morning to avoid crowds in the forest so you can have a better travel experience over there.


Tenryu-ji, Kyoto, Japan

Tenryu-ji - the Historic Monuments of Ancient Kyoto


Tenryu-ji is another renowned temple in Kyoto that you shouldn't miss while you are in Arashiyama region. This temple is surrounded by a beautiful natural garden, as well as the Arashiyama Bamboo Forest. It offers visitors a great chance to appreciate the beauty of the historic architectures and its garden. This place is even prettier on a sunny day, so don't miss out!


Kiyomizu-dera, Kyoto, Japan

Kiyomizu-dera - Iconic Temple offering City Views of Kyoto


If you can only pick one temple to visit to while you are in Kyoto, then Kiyomizu-dera should be undoubtedly your first priority for all first-time visitor. As this iconic temple is best known for its gorgeous architecture, in addition to the stunning panoramic views of the city and the surrounding hills on its wooden terrace. The temple offers special night viewing from time to time; if you are in luck, you could probably see the night view from its terrace!


Fushimi Inari Taisha Sembon Torii, Kyoto, Japan

Fushimi Inari Taisha Sembon Torii - Hiking Trails with Thousands of Torri Gates


Walk through the distinctive vibrant red torii gates is believed to purify your spirit and bring good luck to you. This could be the reason why the Thousand Torii Gates is one of the most popular travel destinations across the country. These torii gates line the hiking trails and form a pathway up the mountain. Follow the torii gates and you should never get lost.


Matcha at GOKAGO, Kyoto, Japan

Japanese cuisine usually reflects the long history and connection to the imperial court. There are many types of Japanese food across the country. Kyoto is renowned for its high-quality matcha and how they make good use of it in culinary. While you are there, you should definitely try its most authentic matcha and other types of green tea, as well as food that are made with it.


Japanese Cuisine to Eat in Kyoto, Japan


  • Matcha - Japan's famous powdered green tea

  • Chazuke - Set meal with green tea pouring over rice

  • Japanese Soufflé Pancakes - stacked fluffy pancakes with creamy sauce

  • Ramen - Japanese soy sauce or miso soup noodle with sliced pork

  • Katsudon - deep-fried pork cutlets with rice


Recommended Restaurants in Kyoto, Japan


  • GOKAGO | 2 Chome-258 Kiyomizu, Higashiyama Ward, Kyoto, 605-0862, Japan ★★★★☆

  • 鯛匠 HANANA | 26-1 Sagatenryuji Setogawacho, Ukyo Ward, Kyoto, 616-8376, Japan ★★★★★

  • 果菓 伊藤軒 Kaka Itoken | Japan, 〒600-8216 Kyoto, Shimogyo Ward, Higashishiokojicho, 721-1 京都タワーサンド 1F ★★★☆☆

  • 麺屋 猪一 Men-ya Inoichi | 542 Ebisunocho, Shimogyo Ward, Kyoto, 600-8033, Japan ★★★★★

  • 名代とんかつ かつくら Katsukura Tonkatsu | Japan, 〒604-8036 Kyoto, Nakagyo Ward, Ishibashicho, 16 三条通寺町東入ル ★★★★★

  • GARIGUETTE -ガリゲット | 17-2 Ishibashicho, Nakagyo Ward, Kyoto, 604-8036, Japan ★★★★★

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