Best Places to Stay in Kyoto

Kyoto Prefecture, Erik Eastman

Kyoto is the essence of traditional Japanese culture, and if one is hungry to know more about this nation’s rich history, Kyoto is the place to be. Home to amazing sights, spiritual destinations, and a legacy that’s second to none, there’s so much going, which can make it at times a difficult place to know where to begin when it comes to planning logistics like accommodation. 

When on a budget, consider staying at a hostel, but when chasing something fancy, the city has plenty of luxury options too. Alternatively, if a traveler wants to embrace the city’s traditional culture, then a night or two at a classic ryokan is the way to go. To know where to stay in Kyoto, here is a handy guide readers can base their travels for thei next Japan adventure.

 

Kyoto Neighborhood

Kyoto consists of a variety of unique areas, each with its appeals and attractions. Given the diversity of this city, where guests stay has a big impact on how they will enjoy their trip. For that reason, here is a breakdown of Kyoto’s top neighborhoods.

Downtown Kyoto

Downtown Kyoto

Downtown Kyoto at Night, Pappa Neo

Downtown Kyoto is the heart of actions and the best place in the city. Downtown Kyoto is within walking distance from so many highlight destinations, including two of the city’s main sightseeing areas: Southern Higashiyama and Northern Higashiyama. It is also within walking distance to both of the city’s subway lines and two train lines, as well as hundreds of restaurants, shops, and bars.

 

Kyoto Station Area

Kyoto Station by Zairon

Kyoto Station by Zairon

Another excellent central location to be based in is in the Kyoto Station area. Guests are not only surrounded by more restaurants and shops, but are also being so close to Kyoto Station, offering convenient access to public transport for day trip destinations throughout Kyoto and wider Japan.

 

Southern Higashiyama

Southern Higashiyama

Southern Higashiyama, Danny Burley

Southern Higashiyama is home to many of the city’s most impressive sights, including the traditional atmospheric streets. It’s also surrounded by excellent dining establishments and quick access to the historic area of Gion

 

Central Kyoto

Central Kyoto

Central Kyoto, Geoff Whalan

Central Kyoto is a huge area that covers the middle of the city. While there are plenty of good accommodation options that are not too far from the subway lines, tourists will have to travel if they want to explore Kyoto’s more famous sightseeing districts. It is considered the beating heart of the downtown area and home to many of the best bars and restaurants.

 

Arashiyama

Arashiyama

The bamboo groves of Arashiyama, Patrick Foto

Arashiyama is situated all the way over on the west side of the city. Although it’s not Kyoto’s most popular area to set up a home base, it is perfect for those who want to avoid the business of the city and enjoy getting up close with nature. This more lush destination is also home to one of the city’s finest accommodation options: the stunning Hoshinoya Kyoto.

 

Northern Higashiyama

HIGASHIYAMA DISTRICT

While there aren’t many hotels in Northern Higashiyama, it is a pristine place for those who want to embrace Kyoto’s greener side and are not fussed about hopping on a bus to explore the more central districts. There are a handful of local charms and for sleeping a few quaint ryokans, guesthouses, and vacation rentals in the area too.

 

Kibune

Kibune

Kibune, Norio NAKAYAMA

Sitting up tall in the mountains that loom from the north of the city, Kibune is ideal for anyone who wants to escape the city for a night. Isolated enough to feel like a real retreat, but close enough to get into all the action. This secretive destination is a real hidden gem.

 

 

Luxury hotels

Kyoto has long been a sought-after destination in Japan. It holds tight to its traditional roots that it continues to draw both tourists and locals to come each year. There are several top-notch accommodations that Kyoto offers. This simple list will serve as a guide to help readers plan and decide where to stay during their tour and visit.

The Four Seasons Hotel Kyoto

The Four Seasons Hotel Kyoto

The Four Seasons Hotel Kyoto, The Four Seasons Hotel

Transform Japan experience into a full-on cultural experience at The Four Seasons Hotel Kyoto. Positioned in the historic district of quaint Higashiyama, this complex is built around an 800-year-old garden, which was mentioned in an epic poem called The Tale of Heike that dates back to the 12th century. It’s an intimate hideaway that transports guests to a different time. Guests are also welcome to tea ceremonies in Kyoto, Michelin-star sushi, and ancient healing spa treatments, all without within the premises.

Address: 445-3 Myohoin Maekawacho, Higashiyama Ward, Kyoto, 605-0932, Japan

Website: fourseasons.com

Hours: Open 24 hours

Phone: +81755418288

 

Hyatt Regency Kyoto

Hyatt Regency Kyoto

Hyatt Regency Kyoto, Hyatt Regency

The Hyatt Regency Kyoto blends traditional Japanese beauty into every aspect of the hotel experience. Welcoming guests with a lush bamboo grove, at this luxury establishment, a maiko (apprentice geisha) performs traditional dance shows for guests every evening. Each of the rooms features Japanese wooden bathtubs and sliding screen doors for that added local Kyoto touch.

Address: 644-2 Sanjusangendomawari, Higashiyama Ward, Kyoto, 605-0941, Japan

Website: hyatt.com

Hours: Open 24 hours

Phone: +81755411234

 

Hotel Granvia Kyoto

Hotel Granvia Kyoto

Hotel Granvia Kyoto, ホテルグランヴィア京都

Sitting inside the city’s main train station, there is no hotel more central than the Hotel Granvia. While the building’s powerful architectural style is elegant and enthralling, the highlight has to be the views of the Kyoto Tower, available from each of the various rooms. This impressive hotel is not only idyllically positioned in the heart of the city, but also offers a range of facilities including a wedding chapel, a banquet hall, restaurant, on-site stores, and spa facilities.

Address: Japan, 〒600-8216 Kyoto, Shimogyo Ward, Higashishiokojicho, 901番地 内 Kyoto Station Building

Website: granvia-kyoto.co.jp

Hours: Open 24 hours

Phone: +81753448888

 

Ryokans

A traditional Japanese Ryokan is one of the most significant symbols that represent Japan. For one to get fully immersed in Japanese Culture, it is recommended that they should spend a night or two. A ryokan gives a tranquil atmosphere, making one’s visit relaxing and worthwhile. Here are some of the top ryokans in Kyoto.

Togetsutei

Togetsutei

Togetsutei, Giovanni Consiglio

Explore Arashiyama the most picture-perfect locale in Kyoto the right way, by staying at the picturesque Togetsutei. Sitting west of the city’s urban area, Arashiyama is a truly awe-inspiring natural wonder with stunning architecture and incredible natural beauty. All the rooms offer a luxurious amenities, private gardens, and mesmerizing views. When not venturing into the wonders of Arashiyama, guests can also enjoy the ryokan’s gift shop, onsen, and spa.

Address: 54-4 Arashiyama Nakaoshitacho, Nishikyo Ward, Kyoto, 616-0004, Japan

Website: togetsutei.co.jp

Hours: Open 24 hours

Phone: +81758711310

 

Hoshinoya Kyoto

Hoshinoya Kyoto

Hoshinoya Kyoto, 星のや京都/HOSHINOYA Kyoto

Nestled right in the heart of Arashiyama, this picturesque Kyoto ryokan will sweep any guest into bliss with its river views and magnificent scenery. The ryokan was originally built in the Meiji period and is beloved for its cozy ambiance as well as eye-catching decorations, including lanterns and handcrafted furniture. Of course, Hoshinoya Kyoto also boasts extremely well-curated rooms, first-rate service, and delectable meals created by the well-known chef Kubota Ichiro. When staying at this ryokan, don’t forget to check out the water and atmospheric open-air tearoom. 

Address: Japan, 〒616-0007 Kyoto, Nishikyo Ward, 嵐山元録山町11−2

Website: hoshinoya.com

Hours: Open 24 hours

Phone: +81570073066

 

Kinse Inn

Kinse Ryokan

Kinse Ryokan, きんせ旅館

Kinse Inn was once an “ageya” or in a “pleasure house for the elites.” Today, it has been renovated into a café and stunning Kyoto ryokan. On the café’s ground floors are glorious stained-glass windows and vaulted ceilings that serve as remnants of Japan’s Westernization period during the 1900s.

Head upstairs, and guests will find a small traditional Japanese bath where guests can unwind after a day of non-stop sightseeing in Kyoto. Additionally, it has a more authentic Japanese charm, with calligraphy scrolls and paper lanterns that decorate the inn’s rooms. The whole second floor can be privately rented for those who want to spare no expense immersing themselves fully in this extraordinary ryokan in Kyoto that boasts over two centuries of history.

Address: 79 Nishishinyashiki Tayucho, Shimogyo Ward, Kyoto, 600-8827, Japan

Website: kinseinn.com

Hours: Open 24 hours

Phone: +81753514781

 

Ryokan Sumiya Kihoan

Ryokan Sumiya Kihoan

Ryokan Sumiya Kihoan, Chang Tao

For pampering and relaxation, be sure to book a stay at Ryokan Sumiya Kihoan. Featuring impressive Japanese architecture and lovely grounds, guests can immerse into traditional practices like taking part in tea ceremonies in Kyoto. It’s an undeniable taste of old-world Kyoto charm. This ryokan offers guests the chance to choose from a private hot spring bath or a traditional Japanese guest room with impressive mountain views. The inn also has a full-service spa offering therapeutic treatments.

Address: Miyanooku-25番地 Hiedanocho Kakihana, Kameoka, Kyoto 621-0036, Japan

Website: sumiya.ne.jp

Hours: Open 24 hours

Phone: +81771227722

 

Gion Hatanaka

Gion Hatanaka

Gion Hatanaka, Sung Eun Kim

Gion Hatanaka is located in a celebrated historic district known for its ancient architecture and intriguing geishas. While the ryokan’s location, right by Yasaka Shrine, is one of its top features. Each of the guest rooms has a private bath and exclusive views of the private gardens. The ryokan’s dining offerings include a wondrous and one-of-a-kind culinary course that features a maiko – a geisha apprentice – to eat with you. 

Address: 505 Gionmachi Minamigawa, Higashiyama Ward, Kyoto, 605-0074, Japan

Website: thehatanaka.co.jp

Hours: Open 24 hours

Phone: +81755415315

 

Hostels

When travelling on a tight travel budget, a hostel is an ideal accommodation for one’s visit. Near to eateries and other historical landmarks, guests can also make friends along the way since travelers opt for these popular hostels. Since Kyoto is a favorite among tourists and locals, there are a number of accommodations available for one’s stay. Here are some top-notch hostels.

Guest House Hachi

Guest House Hachi

Guest House Hachi , hachi

Like much of Kyoto’s ancient architecture, this immaculately preserved hostel is a piece of art. Guest House Hachi, a renovated machiya (townhouse), turned stylish hostel establishment is Kyoto’s classical charm at an affordable price. The interior features private rooms with tatami flooring as well as shared dorms. There’s also a small Japanese garden which offers space plenty of opportunities to unwind and soak up the tranquility of the city. Positioned just one stop away from Kyoto Station in historic Shimabara, it’s location couldn’t be better.

Address: 505 Gionmachi Minamigawa, Higashiyama Ward, Kyoto, 605-0074, Japan

Website: guesthousehachi.com

Hours: Open 24 hours

Phone: +81757462069

 

K’s House

K's House Kyoto

K’s House Kyoto, K’s House Kyoto – Backpackers Hostel

Known throughout Japan as one of the nation’s most reputable hotel chains, K’s House boasts one excellent Kyoto outpost. Sitting just a ten-minute walk from Kyoto Station, K’s House Kyoto is a great spot to set up a home base when backpacking through this fascinating city. The hostel features Japanese and Western-style rooms, as well as a lounge with computers that free to use. A diner and bar called Zen Cafe is also available. On its rooftop, guests can find a terrace with a stunning view of the city.

Address: 418 Nayacho, Shimogyo Ward, Kyoto, 600-8142, Japan

Website: kshouse.jp

Hours: Open 24 hours

Phone: +81753422444

Hostel Ebi

Hostel Ebi

Hostel Ebi, YOYOGAGA

Hostel Ebi is a small, cute venue that’s perfect for solo travelers as it encourages guests to socialize and share meals together, but if you want to get a good night’s sleep, don’t worry! It becomes quiet and peaceful in the evenings. Sitting right next to Nishiki Market, and surrounded by many including a friendly pub in the same building, it’s also very accessible for those who want to get out and make the most of their evenings.

Address: Japan, 〒604-8144 Kyoto, Nakagyo Ward, Motohonenjicho, 683 錦ビル 4F 烏丸

Website: hostel-ebi.com

Hours: Open 24 hours

Phone: +81752115811

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