questions & answers: general japan travel

how to travel around kyoto

How to travel around Kyoto

Hi there!

I'm going to be travelling from Tokyo as this is where my base is to Kyoto for a day visit. I've heard it takes 2 hours or so to get there by train. I will be buying the 7 day JR pass. Once I get to Kyoto, I would like to go:

Fushimi Inari Shrine
Ryoanji Temple
Bamboo Forest
Manga Museum

Any other gardens and temples you could recommend?

I don't really want to ride the bus as I want to experience it first hand by being out. Would it be ok to bike around Kyoto or do I need to ride the bus to get to these sites. Also, what is the latest train to depart from Kyoto to Toyko.

Many thanks in advance!


Hi there!

A bicycle is the way to go in Kyoto! There are almost no mountains and the city really ain't that large.

For additional sightseeing in Kyoto I would recommend Ginkakuji (the silver pavilion). The temple itself is not very special but the garden really makes up for that. It conveys a very nice Zen feeling and there is a small walk up the mountain that gives a beautiful panoramic view of the garden and Kyoto.

The last train you can use with the JR Pass leaves Kyoto at 20:49 and is the Hikari 538.

Hope you enjoy Kyoto, it is a very lovely city (I currently live here)!


Sorry to bother you again Daniel-san but I've heard bicycle parking in Kyoto is really hard. Do you have any points where I can put it without it getting pounded? Also, do you have a rough estimate on how long it would take cycling from Kyoto train station to Kinkakuji temple?

Many thanks again!


Hi again,

It is not that hard, just don't park your bicycle in the middle of the road.
You can always park your bicycle in front of a shop/supermarket/public building, you will find that Japanese park their bicycles together so just put it between them.

I know Kyoto very well and for me it would take slightly over 30 minutes if you are yet unfamiliar with the city I would guess somewhere between 45-60 minutes.

Hope this helps,


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