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“Yonbanchi Winter Visit” 4 of 5 stars
Review of Yonbanchi

Yonbanchi
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4, Shinnyo-cho, Kyoto, Kyoto Prefecture   |  
Hotel amenities
Ranked #12 of 89 B&Bs / Inns in Kyoto
Narita
Contributor
12 reviews 12 reviews
12 hotel reviews
Reviews in 11 cities Reviews in 11 cities
5 helpful votes 5 helpful votes
“Yonbanchi Winter Visit”
4 of 5 stars Reviewed March 15, 2014

I stayed in yonbanchi for 5 nights in total in the winter season. Divyam and yasuko were very welcoming hosts and nothing was too much trouble, yasuko even drove me to the super market and around the local streets on my first day there so I could get my bearings of the place.

The location is very beautiful and a 5-10min walk from the Main Street, supermarket (on the right side corner as you walk into the Main Street and it has wonderful fresh food) and bus stop. I was there in winter so it was freezing in my room other than the heated futon which you still needed to rug up to keep warm in. The breakfast was more than ample for me with fruit and toast. I spent a couple of evenings sitting downstairs watching the Winter Olympics on tv with Divyam and yasuko and chatted with them.

Divyam is a wealth of local knowledge and took me on a short walking tour on the first day I was there of local temples. As helpful as he was I must say I did feel as other reviewers have written that he did try to plan your trip for you even if you had planned an itinerary yourself, and I found him to come across annoyed if you didn't follow his instructions or visit what he had said to. Divyam was very adamant I should try the public baths which was a great experience, something I was a little unsure of doing as we are not used to public nakedness back home but the ladies who you share the baths with were so friendly. I would recommend staying here if you wish to view the golden pavilion area as it was fairly close and the bus map you're given is helpful aswell. Just be aware that the room you sleep in is up very steep stairs that you have to climb almost on all fours and you sleep in a room with thin doors right next to Divyam and yasuko. Overall I found it an amazing experience to stay in a samurai house and be welcomed into their home so openly. I hope you find this review helpful :)

Stayed February 2014, traveled solo
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20 reviews from our community

Traveler rating
    14
    4
    1
    1
    0
See reviews for
2
10
4
Business
0
Rating summary
  • Sleep Quality
    4.5 of 5 stars
  • Location
    4.5 of 5 stars
  • Rooms
    4 of 5 stars
  • Service
    4.5 of 5 stars
  • Value
    4 of 5 stars
  • Cleanliness
    4.5 of 5 stars
Traveler tips help you choose the right room.   Room tips (4)
Date | Rating
  • English first
  • French first
  • Italian first
  • Spanish first
  • Any
English first
Muncie, Indiana
2 reviews
Reviews in 2 cities Reviews in 2 cities
6 helpful votes 6 helpful votes
2 of 5 stars Reviewed December 25, 2012

The owner needs to add space heaters in the winter. Only the bed was heated at night. You could come back at night and get in bed; it was too cold for anything else.

The owner wanted to plan out our trip for us. We had already done extensive research, but he would not accept that we wanted to do our own thing. We almost missed closing time for Kiyomisudera because he insisted on telling us how to rent bikes when we had no intention of doing so.

Breakfast is chintzy: two cups of coffee max, three halves of an English muffin max, and a small bowl of fruit. Not enough fuel for a morning of walking and sightseeing.

The house is beautiful, but hard to find. The map he gave us did not have enough landmarks on it to be useful and not all the streets are on the map.

No amenities. Not even a heated room.

I wish our experience had mirrored those of the other reviewers.

Room Tip: If it will be cold when you visit, ask if the rooms will be heated.
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  • Stayed December 2012, traveled as a couple
    • 2 of 5 stars Value
    • 2 of 5 stars Location
    • 2 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 1 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 3 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 2 of 5 stars Service
Was this review helpful? Yes 2
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Nottingham, United Kingdom
Senior Reviewer
9 reviews 9 reviews
5 hotel reviews
Reviews in 5 cities Reviews in 5 cities
10 helpful votes 10 helpful votes
3 of 5 stars Reviewed June 1, 2012

I was dissapointed by the lack of privacy at Yonbanchi and all the reviews I'd read were so good. The location is good but the downstairs room opens at the ceiling level and with the owners living in the next room, you cannot have a private conversation. The room doesn't have a kettle nor hot water and it is clear that the owner does not want you to drink or eat in your room. It is really a shared house and a nice place to sleep. We stayed 4 nights , you don't get a Yukata but I would have expected at least a change of towel in this time. The owners are friendly but overly so and wanted to plan our itinary for us , even though I explained many times that I knew Kyoto very well. As I say a great location but a shared European household.

  • Stayed April 2012, traveled with friends
    • 3 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Location
    • 5 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 2 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 3 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 4 of 5 stars Service
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This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
New Orleans, Louisiana
2 reviews
5 of 5 stars Reviewed May 19, 2012

The house of the Samurai puts one in the spirit of visiting nearby Shinnyo-do temple and the many other sites of sacred grounds in Kyoto; owners Divyam and Yosuka are the ultimate guides to a remarkable experience in Kyoto. When I left Yonbanchi after a ten-day stay, it felt as though I was leaving home.

Room Tip: Both rooms are desirable in their own way; upstairs may be more quiet and restful.
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  • Stayed March 2012, traveled solo
    • 5 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Location
    • 4 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 3 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 5 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 stars Service
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Ho Chi Minh City, Vietnam
Senior Reviewer
7 reviews 7 reviews
4 hotel reviews
Reviews in 6 cities Reviews in 6 cities
5 of 5 stars Reviewed March 25, 2012

The ryokan stands in a quiet alley located between 2 temples.

The house has a traditional taste with authentic minimalist rooms. The ground floor round has a good space, and has a view on a small and cute garden; The bedding is very confortable, I'll let you find out why.

Our host Divyam was more than welcoming: we were taken in charge with lots of advice and indications on what we could do in Kyoto and had interesting discussions on Japanese culture, he's been living for many years.

Don't miss the sento no far away from the ryokan!

  • Stayed March 2012, traveled as a couple
    • 5 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Location
    • 5 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 5 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 5 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 stars Service
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Toronto, Canada
Reviewer
3 reviews 3 reviews
3 hotel reviews
Reviews in 3 cities Reviews in 3 cities
2 helpful votes 2 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed October 24, 2011

In addition to its excellent location the guesthouse is a beautiful, traditional Japanese dwelling. The owners went above and beyond in both hospitality and advice for sight seeing. Follow their advice and you will be sure to have a memorable trip. Staying in this type of lodging sets the tone for the sights that you will visit in the city. It helps you understand and appreciate them that much more. Avoid a basic hotel while in Kyoto and go straight for this authentic experience. I hope I get the chance to return in the future.

  • Stayed October 2011, traveled solo
    • 5 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Location
    • 5 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 5 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 5 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 stars Service
Was this review helpful? Yes 1
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Shanghai, China
Top Contributor
77 reviews 77 reviews
23 hotel reviews
Reviews in 34 cities Reviews in 34 cities
42 helpful votes 42 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed October 21, 2011

The location of this home is excellent and the rooms are clean and lovely. The house itself is very clean and has lovely decor. Our host went above and beyond giving us advice about where to go, what to see, what to eat, etc...
On our first night he gave us advice about where to use a public bathhouse and where to rent bicycles. We rented bikes for the next two days from a great guy - at a great price! Then we went to the baths, which gave us all an excellent night's sleep.
The location is quite close to several of the temples on the North-eastern slope of the hills around Kyoto. We followed the recommendations visiting several temples before ending at sunset in the best location.
The next day we did even more biking around the city to other temples and the castle.
Our host arranged a shuttle for us to take to the airport in Osaka on our last day, which was hugely helpful.

  • Stayed October 2011, traveled with family
    • 4 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Location
    • 5 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 5 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 5 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 stars Service
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Additional Information about Yonbanchi

Address: 4, Shinnyo-cho, Kyoto, Kyoto Prefecture
Location: Japan > Kinki > Kyoto Prefecture > Kyoto
Hotel Style:
Ranked #12 of 89 B&Bs / Inns in Kyoto
Number of rooms: 2

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