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Eastern Kyoto full day itinerary, doable?

Sydney, Australia
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Eastern Kyoto full day itinerary, doable?

Hi,

Going to Japan mid May and be visting Kyoto, Tokyo, Kanazawa, Takayama etc.

On one of the days in Kyoto I want to follow this guide japan-guide.com/e/… they state it's for medium paced travellers.

I'm wondering if this is actually possible and good idea? It covers a lot of stuff, but looks like it could be very exhausting? Did anyone done it?

Thanks in advance.

Nara, Japan
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1. Re: Eastern Kyoto full day itinerary, doable?

The link doesn't work... Can you name the places they have to offer?

United States
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2. Re: Eastern Kyoto full day itinerary, doable?

You can pull up the page in question by googling Japan Guide Kyoto Eastern Full Day

I personally think that it's better to pick a smaller number of places, including one or two less-famous temples, if you want to have a splendid experience of Kyoto.

Chicago, Illinois
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3. Re: Eastern Kyoto full day itinerary, doable?

Hopefully someone will reply that they have done it. I suppose it's possible. I don't think they are allocating a lot of time to the major sites. If you want to shop one hour between Kiyomizu and Kodaiji seems really short. Personally, if I had one day in Kyoto, I would reverse the order. Explore the Kiyomizu area and walk up to Kodaiji. At that point, assess how much time I have and possibly cut out some things so that I can make it up to Ginkakuji. But I'd also add Sanjyusangendo before going to Kiyomizu.

Tokyo and California
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4. Re: Eastern Kyoto full day itinerary, doable?

I'm a fast packed traveler, so to me, the itinerary doesn't look particularly hard at all. I'd even add Chionin before or after Yasaka Shrine. I'd cut Keage Incline if I'm not going there at sakura season for sure.

Sydney, Australia
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5. Re: Eastern Kyoto full day itinerary, doable?

Thanks everyone for advice, sorry about the link, don't know what happened, this is the correct one:

japan-guide.com/e/e3950_eastern_kyoto_full.h…

Basically it goes like this:

- Ginkakuji (45 min.)

- Philosopher's Path (90 minutes)

- Nanzenji (1 hour)

- Keage Incline (30 minutes)

- Heian Shrine (1 hour)

- Yasaka Shrine (30 minutes)

- Kodaiji (45 minutes)

- Higashiyama Streets (1 hour)

- Kiyomizudera (1 hour)

They have a map of whole route on the link above.

Sorry I didn't mentioned before, but we will spend 5 days in Kyoto, not one. On other days we go to Nara, Arashiyama, Osaka etc.

Sydney, Australia
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6. Re: Eastern Kyoto full day itinerary, doable?

Thank you Shibuyakko, good idea to cut Keage Incline as we will be in mid May. I guess we can go straight to Heian shrine from Nanzenji temple?

Tokyo and California
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7. Re: Eastern Kyoto full day itinerary, doable?

If you're coming in May, you might not want to walk the entire P. Path because there is nothing special. After Ginkakuji, you may want to walk a part of the path and head to Heian Jingu then to Nanzenji. Don't skip the garden at Heian Jingu. It's really beautiful.

I recommend taking a taxi from Nanzenji to Kiyomizudera first then Kodaiji to Yasaka Shrine via Ninenzaka-Sannenzaka. That way you'll end up in Gion in the evening.

Sydney, Australia
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8. Re: Eastern Kyoto full day itinerary, doable?

Thank you, this sounds like a good plan!

.
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9. Re: Eastern Kyoto full day itinerary, doable?

Are you interested in Buddhism? Architecture? Art? Gardens? History? Your level of interest will impact on how long you spend at any of these places. I'd suggest getting a good guide book or reading up on these temples before you visit so you know what there is to see & experience.

Kyoto can be exhausting - it's a city, lots of walking, traffic, crowds. Make sure you factor in time for stopping - read blogs and you'll soon find that most travellers to Kyoto complain of getting lost, being so tired & cutting their itinerary short & missing out - or the just rush around the outside grounds of temples & miss out on the treasures & gardens. The happiest travel bloggers are those that allow themselves time to wander & discover.

Consider:

Nanzenji is a big temple complex with a number of important sub-temples that contain works of art and gardens that are well worth seeing. You have to pay extra fees to enter the subtemples and you should do this. You should allow time to see the magnificent gardens & art. Stop & have tea here. It takes time to appreciate Nanzenji. It is rewarding to walk the forested paths behind the temples too - a nice change from the city streets. Also nearby are excellent restaurants.

Kiyomizu & streets below can take several hours or half a day - looking around the shops, exploring the streets & galleries, stopping to have lunch or tea/coffee or a snack (BTW a sign saying 'snack' means something else in Japan = a bar with a hostess.) With 5 days you have no need to rush.

Here's a useful map jnto.go.jp/eng/location/rtg/pdf/pg-503.pdf

Stockholm, Sweden
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10. Re: Eastern Kyoto full day itinerary, doable?

I did the same tour (minus Kodai-ji) in one day a couple of weeks ago, in the reverse order. I started at Kiyomizu-dera around 8am and finished at Ginkaku-ji around 2pm, so the whole tour took less than a full day.

Then again, I can agree with Elly M - if this is your first visit I would recommend that you take more time than I did, especially at the larger temple complexes, to enjoy them fully. I have seen most of these sights before, and was more interested in cherry blossoms than exploring the temples. If you just have a 'quick look' at Ginkaku-ji, Heian-jingu, Nanzen-ji, Chion-in, Yasaka-jingu, Kodai-ji and Kiyomizu-dera in a single day, there's a risk you'll end up with temple fatigue and can't really separate one from the other. Read up on all these temples and shrines beforehand so you know a little about them and what you want to see there, if you don't think all of them seem interesting then don't visit just to tick off a list.

So in summary: You can definitely do this itinerary in 3/4 of a day, but it depends on what kind of experience you want. And also, while the Keage Incline was beautiful in cherry blossom season I think you can safely skip it in May.