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Kyoto, on the Japanese island of Honshu, has been a hub of religious activity and political power since the eighth century. It was once the capital of Japan and retains many of the temples and palaces built within this period. Step back in time to imperial Japan as you explore the city’s many World Heritage Sites such as the Kiyomizu Temple. Kyoto is also renowned for its landscaped gardens, many of which are based on designs dating back hundreds of years.
The wealth of cultural history in Kyoto can be overwhelming and it can be difficult to know where to start. Take the Philosopher’s Walk to orient yourself around some of Kyoto’s historic sights, such as the Eikando Temple. The walk takes in three major temples as well as several smaller temples and shrines, boutique shopping areas and restaurants where you can sample the traditional Japanese multicourse dinner, kaiseki. Cherry blossoms line the walk during spring, and in autumn, the area comes alive with the brilliant reds of maple trees.
Central Kyoto offers a combination of modern and traditional delights. Ride up the Kyoto Tower for a 360-degree view over the city from 100 metres (330 feet) up. Explore the Nishiki Market, lined with restaurants, and fresh produce and street food stalls. See giant salamanders and local river fish at the Kyoto Aquarium.
At one of the regular festivals held in the city, taste some of the food brought to Kyoto from all over Japan to please the Emperor, watch traditional crafts being made, take a lesson in saké brewing and experience the culture of Japan.
Lovers of Japanese literature will enjoy the 17th-century Katsura Imperial Villa, built to resemble the fictional setting of the 11th-century novel The Tale of Genji.
Tourism is a large part of Kyoto’s economy and there are some unique attractions such as hand feeding wild snow monkeys at Arashiyama Monkey Park. Kyoto has a welcoming atmosphere, incredible natural beauty and layered history.
Guests of Rihga Royal Hotel Kyoto can walk 7 minutes to Kyoto Station or use the hotel's free shuttle service. Nearby attractions include Kyoto Tower, Nishihonganji Temple, and Kyoto Aquarium.
Located in Minami, this hotel is within a 15-minute walk of Kyoto Tower and Higashi Honganji Temple. Toji Temple and Sanjusangendo Temple are also within 1 mi (2 km).
Located in Central Kyoto, this luxury ryokan is within 1 mi (2 km) of Honnoji Temple, Nijo Castle, and Kyoto Imperial Palace. Gion Corner and Heian Shrine are also within 1 mi (2 km).
Located in Central Kyoto, this hotel is within 1 mi (2 km) of Kyoto Art Center, Nijo Castle, and Higashi Honganji Temple. Kyoto Imperial Palace and Gion Corner are also within 2 mi (3 km).
Located in Arashiyama, this romantic ryokan is 0.1 mi (0.2 km) from Togetsukyo Bridge and within 3 mi (5 km) of Saihoji Temple and Katsura Imperial Villa. Tenryuji Temple and Arashiyama Monkey Park are also within 15 minutes.
Located in Central Kyoto, this hotel is within a 15-minute walk of Kyoto Art Center and Nijo Castle. Kyoto Imperial Palace and Higashi Honganji Temple are also within 2 mi (3 km).
Located in Shimogyo, this hotel is within a 10-minute walk of Honkanji Temple, Kyoto Tower, and Nishihonganji Temple. Kyoto Aquarium and Umekoji Park are also within 15 minutes.