Hi,I’m Keiko from Osaka!

You have been excited for your trip to Kyoto and now that you are here…it is raining?

Don’t be disappointed!

Kyoto is beautiful in rain and there are many places you can visit without getting too wet.

There are also places that truly come alive when it rains.

Let me share my secret on 10 ways to best enjoy rainy Kyoto.

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10 Things to do on a Rainy Day in Kyoto

1.Shisendo Temple/詩仙堂

Shisendo is a Buddhist temple, famous for its zen garden.

The temple was established in 1641.

The zen garden here is considered one of the best in Kyoto.

Paticularly noticeable is a sozu, a type of shishiodoshi, made of a bamboo tube, to scare away wild animals by making a loud noise.

Its noise in the quiet rain is more magical and soothing than you can imagine.

The garden becomes even greener on rainy days making its rustic green more dramatic.

Shisendo somehow becomes more picturesque on a rainy day.

Shisendo is a 5 minute-walk from Ichijoji Kudari Matsumachi Bus Stop on Kyoto Bus #5.

Shisendo Temple
Address:27 monguchi-cho, Ichijo-ji, Sakyo-ku, Kyoto
Location:5 minute walk from the Eizan Electric Railway Ichijoji Station,5 minute walk from Ichijoji Kudari Matsumachi Bus Stop on Kyoto Bus #5
Opening hours:9:00~17:00(Last Admission:16:45)
Closed:23rd May
Admission Fee: Adults:500 yen,High school students:400 yen,Junior high and elementary school students:200 yen

2.Daitokuji Temple, Koto-In/大徳寺・高桐院

Koto-In is a sub-temple of Daitokuji Temple.

The temple has a beautiful teahouse, various art works and scrolls that are registered as the national treasure.

Popularized for its maples, the stone-paved approach to the temple, perfectly beautified with moss, surrounded with the deep green trees are worth traveling for.

The approach is most magical during the rainy days, as its green comes alive.

Koto-In is located next to Daitokuji-mae bus stop and accessible via Kyoto bus # 101, 205 or 206 from Kyoto Station.

Address:53 Murasakino Shimomonzencho, Kita-ku, Kyoto
Location:From JR Kyoto station, take kyoto city bus ♯206 or ♯101 and get off at Daitokuji-mae Bus Stop and walk for few minutes.
Opening hours:9:00〜16:00
Closed:Irregular holiday
Admission Fee:vary by sub-temple(350〜600 yen)

3.Sanju Sangen Do/三十三間堂

This is a Buddhist temple built on a massive land, whose deity is the Thousand Armed Kannon statue, the Goddess of mercy.

The name of the temple literally means a hall with thirty three spaces between columns, highlighting its massive scale of the main hall.

Besides the long main hall, the temple is also famous for having 1001 statues of Kannon in the compound, which is an awe sight you do not want to miss.

Sanju Sangen Do
Address:657 Sanjusangenndo-mawari-machi, Higashiyama-ku, Kyoto
Location:5 minutes walk from Keihan Shichijo Station,The taxi ride from JR Kyoto Station is approximately 10-15 minutes
Phone: 075-561-0467
Opening hours:9:00-16:00(Nov.16 to Mar.)8:00-17:00(Apr. to Nov.15)
Closed:opens everyday
Admission fee:Adults: 600 yen,Junior High and Elementary School Students:400yen,Child:300 yen.

4.Kyoto National Museum/京都国立博物館

This great museum stands right in front of Sanju Sangen Do so you can visit them together.

The museum was originally built to house cultural properties, works owned by temples, shrines and Imperial Household Ministry.

It mainly features pre-modern Japanese and Asian arts.

The place is massive, perfect place escape the rain.

However, it also has lots of open space where interesting exhibits are, so it might not be a good idea to visit during the heavy rains.

Kyoto National Museum
Address:527 Chaya-cho, Higashiyama-ku,Kyoto
Location: 7 minute walk from Keihan Main Line Shichijo Station,20-25 minutes walk from JR Kyoto station,Take City Bus #206 or #208 from JR Kyoto Station, and get off at Hakubutsukan Sanjusangendo-mae bus stop.
Opening Hours:9:30~17:00(Last Admission:16:30)
Closed:Monday(or, if Monday is a national holiday, the following Tuesday),25th Dec-1st.Jan.
Admission Fee:Adult 260 yen,Free admission for age under 17 and seniors over 70, not including guide booklet.

5.Shorenin Temple/青蓮院

Shorenin is a significant Buddhist temple, where the founder of Pure Land Buddhism was ordained a monk at the age of 9.

Built in the late 13th century, Shorenin was originally an abbot.

Today, its compound’s beauty, garden, and the eight hundred year old camphor tree attract many tourists.

You can admire the garden with the pond from the tatami room of the hall without worrying about the weather.

The temple is a five minute walk from the nearest subway station, Higashiyama Station on the Tozai Line.

Shorenin Temple
Address:69-1 Sanjobo-cho Awataguchi Higashiyama-ku Kyoto
Location:7 minute walk from Tozai Subway Line Higashiyama Station
Opening hours:9:00~17:00(Last Admission:16:30)* In spring and autumn, they hold a special night visit.
Closed:Opens everyday
Admission Fee: Adults:500 yen,Grade 7-12 students:400 yen,Younger pupils:200 yen

6.Nishiki Market/錦市場

Nishiki Market, Kyoto’s kitchen, has over 100 stores and restaurants along narrow streets.

This is the place to be if you want to look into the belly of the locals.

There are ready to eat food, fresh produce, souvenir shops… basically anything you may need.

You can get to the market on foot from Shijo Station on Karasuma Subway Line or from Karasuma or Kawaramachi Stations on the Hankyu Line.

Please take a look at this article for more information.

Nishiki Market
Address:609 Nishidaimonji-cho, Tominokoji-dori Shijo-dori-agaru, Nakagyo-ku,Kyoto
Location:3 minutes walk from Subway Karasuma Line Shijo station,4 minutes walk from Kawaramachi station
Phone:Kyoto Nishiki Market Promotion Association:075-211-3882 (Japanese only)
Opening Hours:It depends on the store
Closed:Opens everyday

7.Kyoto Station Building/京都駅ビル

The Kyoto Station Building is not only a transportation hub but also an entertainment area that offers everything one needs.

The futuristic modern building with exposed steal beams is to be admired at.

There is a skyway on the 11th floor, through which you can view the city and the architectural design of the station building. 

There are a few shopping malls inside, including Porta, Cube, Isetan Department store, where you can do souvenir shopping. 

Please take a look at this article for more information.

Kyoto Station Building
Address:901 Higashishiokoji-cho, Karasuma-dori, Shiokoji sagaru, Shimogyo-ku
Location:1 minute walk from JR Kyoto station
Opening Hours:It depends on the store
Closed:Opens everyday

8.Kyoto Railway Museum/京都鉄道博物館

This railway museum is considered one of three top rail museums in Japan.

Three floors and with a 30,000 sqm area, the museum showcases various retired trains, including romantic locomotives and futuristic shinkansen.

You can also ride a steam locomotive.

On your way out, do not miss the old beautiful Nijo Station which was transferred from the nearby original site.

Kyoto Railway Museum
Address:Kankijicho, Shimogyo-ku, Kyoto
Location:20 minute walk from JR Kyoto station,take City Bus #205 or #208 from JR Kyoto Station, and get off at Umekoji-koen-mae bus stop and walk for about 3 minutes.
Click here for more details:Access
Opening Hours:10:00~17:30(Last Admission:17:00)
Closed:Wednesday(Open on public holidays),30th Dec-1st Jan.
Admission Fee:General admission (18 years and older): 1,200 yen,University and high school students: 1,000 yen,Junior high and elementary school students: 500 yen,Children (3 years and older): 200 yen

9.The Kyoto International Manga Museum/京都国際マンガミュージアム

This 4 story building’s (3 floor with a basement) walls are stacked with comics!

For Japanese anime or comic fans, this is your dream land.

Though most comics here are in Japanese, the museum has some collections of foreign comics.

Kyoto International Manga Museum
Address:452 Kinbukicho, Nakagyo-ku,Kyoto
Location:3 minutes walk from Subway Karasuma Oike Station,
Opening Hours:10:00~18:00(Last Admission:17:30)
Closed:Wednesday(or, if Wednesday is a national holiday, the following Thursday),27th Dec 4th Jan., during the New Year’s holiday and maintenance periods.
* There may be changes to the museum opening and closing times without notice.
Click here for more details:Calendar
Admission Fee:Adult 800 yen,High and Junior High School Students 300yen,Elementary School Students 100 yen

10.Kyoto Aquarium/京都水族館

This 3-story building aquarium features aquatic ecosystems of creeks, rivers and oceans.

Popular exhibits include giant salamander, beautiful jellyfish tank, and dolphin shows. 

Kyoto aquarium is about a 15-minute walk, west of Kyoto Station.

Kyoto Aquarium
Address:35-1, Kankijicho, Shimogyo-ku Kyoto-shi,Kyoto(inside Umekoji Park)
Location: 7 minutes walk from Umekoji-Kyotonishi Station on the JR San-in Main Line
Opening Hours:10:00~18:00(Last Admission:17:00)*Subject to change during Golden Week, summer holidays and the New Year period
Closed:opens everyday
Admission Fee:Adult 2,050 yen,University and High School Student 1,550yen,Junior High School and Elementary School Student 1,000 yen,Child(3 and over)600 yen

Have a happy rainy day in Kyoto!

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