Kyoto, Japan, is a fascinating city that offers a unique mix of tradition and modernity. This destination appeals to all travelers, from those seeking cultural experiences to those looking for adventure. With its stunning temples, beautiful gardens, and delicious cuisine, Kyoto is a must-visit destination for anyone traveling to Japan. Whether you’re interested in exploring the city’s rich history or simply soaking up its vibrant atmosphere, Kyoto offers something for everyone. So, let’s dig into some of the best things to see in this fantastic city.

Fushimi Inari Taisha

Fushimi Inari Taisha is a must-visit destination for anyone traveling to Kyoto. Located just a short journey from the city center, this stunning shrine is famous for its thousands of vermillion torii gates. Visitors can hike to the top of the mountain, passing through tunnels of gates along the way. The hike takes about two to three hours, but it’s well worth it for the breathtaking views of the city and the surrounding mountains. The shrine itself is dedicated to Inari, the god of rice, and visitors can see numerous fox statues throughout the grounds, which are said to be the messengers of Inari.

Hōkan-ji Temple

Hōkan-ji Temple, also known as Yasaka Pagoda, is a beautiful and historic temple in the Higashiyama district of Kyoto. The temple is famous for its five-story pagoda, which is 46 meters tall. Visitors can climb to the top of the pagoda for stunning views of the surrounding area. The temple grounds also have several other buildings, including a main hall and a beautiful garden.

Arashiyama Bamboo Grove


The Arashiyama Bamboo Grove is a stunning natural wonder located on the outskirts of Kyoto. The grove is famous for its towering stalks of bamboo, creating a serene and otherworldly atmosphere.

Kinkaku-ji Temple

Kinkaku-ji Temple, known as the Golden Pavilion, is one of Kyoto’s most iconic landmarks. The temple is named after its stunning exterior, covered in gold leaf and shimmers in the sunlight. The temple’s history dates back to the 14th century, and it has been rebuilt several times over the years due to fires and other disasters. The temple was initially built as a retirement villa for a shogun but was later converted into a Zen temple.

Kiyomizu-dera Temple

The Kiyomizu-dera Temple is historic and beautiful in the Higashiyama district of Kyoto. The temple was founded in the early 8th century and has since become one of the city’s most famous and popular attractions. You can explore the temple grounds, which include several buildings, serene gardens, and a waterfall. The temple is renowned for its wooden stage, which stands 13 meters above the ground and offers stunning views of the surrounding area.

Higashi Hongan-Ji

Higashi Hongan-Ji is a beautiful temple located in central Kyoto, Japan. The temple was founded in 1602 and is one of the two main temples of the Jodo Shinshu sect of Pure Land Buddhism. The temple’s main hall is one of the most significant wooden structures in the world, and its stunning architecture and intricate carvings are a sight to behold.


A day trip to Osaka from Kyoto is a must-do activity for anyone visiting Japan. Osaka is a vibrant and bustling city that uniquely blends modern and traditional Japanese culture. There’s something for everyone in Osaka with its numerous attractions, including the famous Osaka Castle, the bustling Dotonbori district, and the stunning views from the Umeda Sky Building.

Explore Gion

Gion is a charming and historic district located in the heart of Kyoto. The community is famous for its traditional wooden machiya houses, geisha culture, and beautiful temples. Explore the narrow streets and alleys, where you may get a glimpse of a geisha or maiko (apprentice geisha) on their way to an appointment. One of the best ways to experience Gion is by exploring Hanami-koji Street, lined with traditional restaurants, tea houses, and shops.

John Waites
A veteran who is passionate about inspiring others through travel and art, sharing ideas for personal growth and fulfilment.

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