Kyoto 1 Day Guide - The Best Full Day Tour For Your Trip to Kyoto

by Luke - TripleLights travel specialist

This eight hour itinerary takes you through some of the most traditional sights, including the World Heritage Nijo Castle, the golden temple, a shrine that features a tunnel of one thousand red torii gates, and Kiyomizu Temple, another great sight of World Heritage. All of this can be enjoyed in a packed day of Kyoto sightseeing. We hope that this helps you to plan a perfect itinerary for your tip to Kyoto.

1. Nijo Castle

At the World Heritage Nijo Castle, the obvious highlight is the array of Japanese gardens, each of which offers its own elegance and style. Ninomaru Garden offers a glimpse into the Edo period. Honmaru Garden is typical of the Meiji period and created under instructions from Emperor Meiji himself. And finally, Seiryu Garden, which offers Showa period landscapes of stones around a vast pond. All three gardens frequently appear in top ten lists that represent the best gardens of Japan.

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2. Kinkakuji

Kyoto 1 Day Guide - The Best Full Day Tour For Your Trip to KyotoAnother World Heritage Site, and perhaps one of the most beatiful temples in Japan. Kyokochi Pond which sits below the temple reflects the shine of gold like a mirror, and is simply incredible to look out during a winter season that has brought with it snow. But you can enjoy Kinkaku all year around, when the temple itself stands out against a backdrop of seasonal nature.

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3. Fushimi Inari Shrine

This 1,300 year old inari shrine is now the headquarters for 30,000 smaller inari shrines across Japan. The highlight of a trip to Fushimi Inari Shrine is the row of 10,000 red torii gates, said to have been placed here because of a tradition of making a wish, and donating a gate to the shrine so that the worshipper's wish would come true; a custom that still happens to this day. 

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4. Kiyomizu-Dera

Take the Kiyomisu-zaka road through winding streets of small souvenir shops to the top of Mt. Kiyomizu, and atop you will find this incredible World Heritage temple. The temple is stunning, and includes a variety of sights and things to do, including entering the ‘womb’ of Daizuigu Bosatsu, taking part in old traditions, and exploring the Moon Garden. The view from Kiyomizu-dera is another feature that makes this temple one of the most visited spots in Kyoto.

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First time visiting Japan and don't want to plan alone?

No pressure! If you want a more personalized itinerary, feel free to book a private tour guide or join a private tour group with TripleLights. With a private guide or private tour group, you can eliminate the risk of getting lost in any areas, be able to understand the country's traditions and culture better by having all questions answered by a professional, and immerse yourself in enjoying Japan hassle-free. 

Blogs about Kyoto

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Need help planning your trip to Kyoto ?

If you are interested to know more and save your time during your trip to Kyoto, You can send a message to our local guides to get a customized itinerary and quotation for an unforgettable experience.

In the TripleLights website you can find the best professional guides all over Japan to help you plan your trip. Check our local guides for Kyoto


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Recent Tour Reviews in Kyoto

“ Half day tour with Hiroshi ”

Excellent
12 minutes ago Traveler: Jehanzeb -   Tour Guide: Hiroshi

Tour layout and plan: We did our own planning and Hiroshi was very cooperative in the process. English understanding and speaking:3.5/5 Knowledge of culture and history: 4/5 Customer service: I could not spk with Hiroshi because of the useless policy of Tripplelight. Unlike other guide services, you can only contact them thru email, which increases the time to deliver and receive messages very ...
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“ Highlights of Kyoto ”

Excellent
6 hours ago Traveler: Robert -   Tour Guide: Kenji

Kenjii was a very knowledgeable guide and amenable to whatever our group wanted to do. His English was good, he was happy to answer questions and we had a lovely day together.
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“ Two days in Kyoto ”

Excellent
15 hours ago Traveler: Alon -   Tour Guide: Kaori

Kaori guided us (me and my 24 years old twins ,from Israel) for 2 days in Kyoto. We had an amazing time with her! Kaori has great knowledge and she planned our days in a great way so we got to see and learn about the main city attractions in the best way we could. Kaori also knew how to adjust the plans according to weather and our preferences. We highly recommend choosing her for your trip.
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“ A great day with Kaori ”

Excellent
23 hours ago Traveler: Sheah -   Tour Guide: Kaori

Our group had a wonderful day with Kaori in Kyoto. Before taking us to the bamboo forest, which is crowded she guided us to a quiet off the beaten path to small bamboo grove near a cemetery. We loved it. So well planned. We attended a tea ceremony, Fushimi-Ku ( red gates) Kaori is delightful and speaks excellent English. I highly recommend her services .
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“ A memorable day in Kyoto ”

Excellent
1 day ago Traveler: Ian -   Tour Guide: Hiroko

My son James(24) and I had a wonderful day in Kyoto with Hiroko this week.We visited both some of the major sites but also saw some of the quieter and picturesque parts of the city. Hiroko’s knowledge and enthusiasm brought them all to life in a very memorable way. She also always went the extra mile to ensure we had a great day including a very local lunch of okonomiyaki and at the end of the d...
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“ Good guide, but... ”

Very Good
1 day ago Traveler: Irene -   Tour Guide: Hiroyuki

Hiroyuki was supposed to meet us at the disembarkation center in Osaka and take to Kyoto. He stood together with his driver at the wrong spot, away from all other guides meeting the ship, and we lost 40 min. of precious time. He did his best as the guide, was knowledgeable and friendly, but had to run (literally) all the time to show us what was planned. The tour turned out quite uneasy.
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“ Kyoto experience ”

Excellent
1 day ago Traveler: Michael -   Tour Guide: TOMOE

Very professional caring and courteous guide. Very knowledgeable and informative .Lots of good energy Wholehearted PLUS recommendation
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“ One-day in Kyoto? Eric is a godsend! ”

Excellent
1 day ago Traveler: Ankita -   Tour Guide: ERIC

We had planned to stay 4 days of our 9 day stay in Japan but Typhoon Hagibis put paid to that. Our flights got cancelled 3 days in a row which meant we ended up going to Tokyo directly. I was determined to do at least a day trip to Kyoto even if it meant travelling 2 hrs 40 mins each way on the bullet train. This left us about 8 hours in Kyoto and Eric planned it brilliantly for us He met us at ...
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“ Great day with Mak ”

Excellent
2 days ago Traveler: Christine -   Tour Guide: MAKOTO

We would definitely recommend a tour with Mak, he is friendly knowledgable and nothing was too much trouble He guided us through purchasing our rail tickets and suggested best lunch options to take for our picnic lunch We had a wonderful day visiting such beautiful sights
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“ A great introduction to the real Kyoto. ”

Excellent
2 days ago Traveler: Daniel -   Tour Guide: Yuki

Yuki was an excellent guide. With a sense of humour and relaxed and patient manner he was enjoyable company. He spoke excellent English and gave considered and intelligent explanations to our many questions. Yuki planned an itinerary that met our interests perfectly. We explored interesting areas of Kyoto not on the usual tourist trail. Yuki went out of his way to make it an excellent experienc...
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