What to do in Kyoto

Activities, attractions and tours
Heian Shrine showing a temple or place of worship, religious aspects and heritage architecture

Kyoto Attractions

Kyoto is one of Japan’s most enchanting cities. Located on the island of Honshu, this wondrous city is a mixture of old-world charm and modern progression. It is easy to find an abundance of fun things to do in Kyoto, and it is simple to get a map of the city to find out where the best Kyoto activities are located. You can find terrific deals on Kyoto travel packages including flights, hotel rooms, and Kyoto tours on Expedia.

While visiting Kyoto, you can immerse yourself in the local history with sites such as Shimogamo Shrine, To-ji, and the iconic Nijo Castle. You can also learn more about Japanese history as well as the histories of other countries while visiting museums like the Kyoto National Museum and the Kyoto International Manga Museum.

A visit to the Iwatayama Monkey Park will give you the chance to see some of the region’s most charming creatures. This park is home to numerous snow monkeys and is a must-see attraction in Kyoto. You can even feed and interact with the monkeys while visiting this top tourist destination.

If you are coming to Kyoto in the spring, you will be treated to the sight of beautiful cherry blossoms throughout the city. The magnificent pink and white blossoms seen on the cherry trees create a picturesque setting reminiscent of a storybook theme. Tourists from places all around the world frequently take Kyoto excursions during this time of year to witness this marvelous display of nature.

You also must see the Kyoto Botanical Garden while visiting the city. In addition to being one of the area’s best tourist spots, the garden also gives you the opportunity to escape into a peaceful natural wonderland. You can take a stroll along the paved walking paths as well as through the conservatory. Tourists can see the vibrant flowers and lush green vegetation throughout the garden.

You can save big on your travels by booking through Expedia. The deals featured on Expedia give you the chance to save some money, so you can enjoy all of the attractions in Kyoto to the fullest.

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Most fun & popular experiences in Kyoto

What to do in Kyoto

Free Things to Do in Kyoto

Taking a break in Kyoto on a budget? The following can be seen for nada.

Zohiko Urushi Art Museum - Chock-full of thought-provoking displays and objects, this place is a paradise for curious minds.

Kyoto Art Center - This is the place to get your culture hit and learn all about the local arts scene.

Gion Tatsumi Bridge - Drop by this historic site and learn a little about the region's cultural heritage.

Okazaki Park - This is a bustling area where you can absorb the atmosphere and appreciate the local way of life.

Takaragaike Park - Take some time out by the water to rest and replenish your energy.

Nishiki Market - Leave time to check out this place of local importance.

Honnoji Temple - Spend a moment in prayer or meditation at this revered religious site.

Keage Incline - Bring along your camera and let Mother Nature spark a sense of awe in you.

Murin-an - Renew your mind and body by spending time in nature.


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Read travel guides and advice on visiting Kyoto

Frequently asked questions

What to do in Kyoto on a sunny day?
What to do in Kyoto on a rainy day?
What is Kyoto famous for?
Pack your camera and be impressed by these remarkable attractions:

  • Kiyomizu Temple
  • Nijō Castle
  • Kyoto Imperial Palace

What should I not miss in Kyoto?
Put these things high on your must-do list to make the most of your visit:

  • Kyoto Tower
  • Fushimi Inari Shrine
  • Heian Shrine
  • Sanjusangendo Temple

Are there cheap things to do in Kyoto?
What can you do in Kyoto for free?
You could even leave your credit card in the hotel safe for the day, because these fantastic attractions won’t cost you a thing:

  • Nishiki Market
  • Shijo Omiya
  • Pontocho
  • Philosopher’s Walk

Popular places to visit

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Day trip destinations from Kyoto