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Explore the intricate temples and serene gardens of Kyoto on this 4-hour guided tour visiting some of the imperial city’s most important religious and cultural sites. Check out Sanjusangendo Temple, the longest wooden structure in Japan and home more than 1000 Kannon statues, the beguiling red and green colors of Heian Shrine and the supreme views afforded from Kiyomizu Temple high above Kyoto. This excursion to Kyoto’s top temples also includes all entrance fees.

Highlights

  • Walk through Sanjusangendo Temple, Japan's longest wooden structure
  • Sweeping views of Kyoto city from Kiyomizu Temple
  • Plenty of photo opportunities
  • Informative and friendly guide

Recent Photos of This Tour

What You Can Expect

Kyoto Afternoon Tour: Heian Shrine, Sanjusangendo, Kiyomizu Temple

Kyoto Afternoon Tour: Heian Shrine, Sanjusangendo, Kiyomizu Temple

See the most picturesque temples and beautiful gardens that Kyoto has to offer on this 4-hour afternoon tour, with guide, stopping at some of the city’s most significant religious monuments. Gain new insight into the traditions of ancient Japan and get plenty of photo-taking opportunities as you visit a selection of its beautiful temples and shrines.
Begin your tour by meeting your guide at the Kyoto Avanti center in the afternoon. The city of Kyoto today is home to more than 1.4 million residents, and as it has evolved, it has seamlessly blended its modern architecture with a wealth of religious and cultural structures that date back to the city’s days as Japan’s capital from 794 through 1868. Although the city has been ravaged by many years of war and fire, it was not significantly damaged by bombing raids during World War II, meaning many important ancient structures still survive to this day.
Head over to the visually-striking Heian Jingu Shrine, a wildly colorful building bearing bright-red columns and a green roof. The interior of this beautiful structure is perhaps even more impressive, harboring a series of immaculate gardens and placid ponds. Please note the tour will not enter the site’s Shin-en garden.
Next move on to Sanjusangendo Temple on the eastern edge of Kyoto for your day’s first stop. This beautiful religious site, home to 1,001 statues of Kannon, Bodhisattva and was built in the 13th century, is famous for being the longest wooden building in the entire country, spanning more than 394 feet (120m) in length.
Proceed next to the famous Kiyomizu Temple, stopping to browse the rows of pottery stores that line the streets leading up to the site. This elegant UNESCO World Heritage site, also known as Kiyomizu-dera, offers panoramic views of Kyoto and the surrounding area from its spacious terrace and many walkways lining the nearby foothills of Higashiwama mountain. Finish your tour with a return to your departure point.

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Customer Reviews

Damien C

5 star rating: Highly Recommended April 2016

Fantastic tour, Love half day tours - there is just enough not to be overwhelmed or bored.

Stefanie D

5 star rating: Highly Recommended October 2015

As there are so many sights in Kyoto to visit, I would recommend doing this tour on your first day to orientate yourself. It was great to visit three sites and hear about the history of each site from our very informative and entertaining tour guide.

Gary B

5 star rating: Highly Recommended September 2015

Great job with the palaces but they are major tourist draws. Lots of people trying to see the same stuff.

Chris S

5 star rating: Highly Recommended July 2015

Very well organized and everything ran on time. Guide was knowledgeable and informative. Had a good time.

Suzanne

5 star rating: Highly Recommended May 2015

This could have easily been a full day tour. So much to see and so interesting.

Gilda M

5 star rating: Highly Recommended April 2015

A perfect introduction to the most spectacular temples and shrines in my favorite city in all of Asia. Kiyomizu is a must-see especially for the first timer in Kyoto.

kauaijess2

5 star rating: Highly Recommended April 2015

This afternoon tour was by far one of the most beautiful parts of our entire trip. These temples and shrines are a must and this tour makes it easy to get to all of them with some info since not a lot is in English. Excellent tour.

Anna R

5 star rating: Highly Recommended March 2015

Mickey, our guide, was very knowledgeable. He was equipped with a microphone, thus enabling everyone taking the tour to hear the info on each site we visited. He had a terrific sense of humour as well. The tour featured a shrine and two temples, each very different from one another. Though it was a cold and (almost) rainy day, the experience of visiting the sites was unique and most interesting.

Elise D

5 star rating: Highly Recommended March 2015

This tour was amazing!

Mark H

5 star rating: Highly Recommended December 2014

Great tour guide. He helped us find things to do for the next day and was extremely knowledgable about his subjects.

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