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“Free but not much to see outside the tour”

Kyoto Imperial Palace
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$83.63*
and up
Kyoto Morning Tour of Kinkakuji Temple, Nijo Castle and Kyoto Imperial Palace...
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$160.00*
and up
Kyoto and Nara Day Tour Including Golden Pavilion and Todai-ji Temple from Osaka
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$54.98*
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Kyoto Sushi-Making Class
Ranked #41 of 1,235 things to do in Kyoto
Certificate of Excellence
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Owner description: This location was the home of the Imperial Family until 1868 when the formal residence was relocated to Tokyo. Free, guided tours are given daily but only to those who have made reservations in advance.
Reviewed June 1, 2014

Just to be clear - I didn't do the tour so this review is based on just seeing the grounds. It's free to walk through and while the grounds are pretty, I got a bit bored. If you aren't doing the tour I'd say skip this one - there are a lot more amazing things to see in Kyoto well worth your time.

1  Thank redjillo
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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693 - 697 of 1,875 reviews

Reviewed May 30, 2014

Really enjoyed the tour, it is only an hour but very informative. You can't see much inside the buildings but the architecture is very impressive. The gardens are also very picturesque. We came at 9:30 and got into 10 am tour. Highly recommend it!

Thank TRyana
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed May 29, 2014

We didn't realize that you need to show up at an office and book the tour in advance in order to enter; on top of that, the office will request your passport as identification. All of this seemed unduly formalized. Signage could have been much better to explain things to confused visitors. The tour group was oppressively large, making it difficult to hear the guide. Although it was nice that the tour was free, I think I might prefer to pay something for the tour so that they could have more frequent tours with smaller groups. The buildings were substantial, but fairly spartan; we were much more impressed with Nijo Castle. The gardens were lovely, but could only be observed from the outside.

1  Thank ClevelandTravels
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed May 27, 2014

if you in Kyoto.. you have to go to Kyoto imperial palace. There are 2 free tour in 10 and 2 pm. I came at 9 and the tour at 10 am is already full. So you better come early or book for the next day. I hope there will be more room open for public. i really curious what inside.

1  Thank Faristian N
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed May 26, 2014

The Kyoto Imperial Palace is absolutely stunning....it is much more impressive and beautiful than the Tokyo Imperial Palace. It is an absolute must-see if you are visiting Kyoto, and one of my favorite sights in Japan. Apply for an English guided tour on their website, which is free! Do this in advance to secure your spot--they book up quickly. You learn a lot about the history of the palace as well as the structure of the buildings, it's very interesting and the tours are necessary to view the palace at all. It's so worth the visit.

1  Thank Linnea R
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.

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