The 5 Best Ryokans in Kyoto
Are you looking for the best ryokans in Kyoto? Ryokans are traditional Japanese inns so it makes for an authentic Japanese experience.
Ryokans in Kyoto normally have tatami floors, futon beds, shared baths, and common areas where guests can wear yukata (traditional Japanese kimono) and have a chat with the owners. Onsen (natural hot spring baths) are common in many ryokans, but not all.
Did you know? Two of the oldest hotels in the world are ryokans: Nishiyama Onsen Keiunkan in Hayakawa town and Hoshi Ryokan in Komatsu City. Both ryokans have been around for over 1,000 years.
Ryokans are much more expensive compared to modern-day types of accommodations. But if you’re in Kyoto and you really want a genuinely Japanese kind of living (even for a few days only), you’re in the right place.
We’ve looked through the ones that have competitive rates so you can experience what this iconic traditional inn has to offer.
1. Arashiyama Benkei
Arashiyama Benkei is one of the best ryokans in Kyoto. It’s surrounded by trees right across the road from the Katsura River in Sagatenryuji Susukinobabacho, Ukyo Ward, just a 13-minute walk from Saga-Arashiyama train station. Nearby spots you can explore around the area include Arashiyama Bamboo Grove, Ryoanji Temple, Tenryuji Temple, Togetsukyo Bridge, and Ninnjaji Temple. Arashiyama Benkei price starts at $320 (in USD) per night.
2. Momijiya Annex
Momijiya Annex sits right next to Arashiyama Benkei for the best ryokans in Kyoto. It’s a cozy and warm place to stay at, surrounded by a magnificent natural scenery along the Kiyotaki River. All rooms have their own bathrooms, sliding French doors, and floor-to-ceiling windows that give you access to a wonderful forest view. Momijiya Annex is located in Umegahata Takaocho, Ukyo Ward. Some nearby spots to explore are Toei Kyoto Studio theme park, Ninnaji Temple, and Kyoto Imperial Palace. Momijiya Annex price starts at $200 per night.
3. Yuzuya Ryokan
Located in Gion, Higashiyama Ward, Yuzuya Ryokan is a great option if you want to stay at the heart of Kyoto. Although it’s accessible within the city center, Yuzuya Ryokan is hidden behind a modest entrance along the highway. This ryokan features the typical tatami floors, chabudai dining tables, communal hot bath, and en suite bathrooms. Yuzuya Ryokan is only a 3-minute walk from Yasaka Shrine and 2-km from Kiyomizu Temple. Other Kyoto attractions around the area include Ninenzaka and Sannenzaka slopes, Ishibeikoji Alley, Yogenin Temple, Tsuten Bridge, Japan Kanji Museum and Library, and Tatsumi Bridge, among many others. Yuzuya price starts at $300 per night.
4. Kyo No Yado Sangen-Ninenzaka Ryokan
Kyo No Yado Sangen-Ninenzaka is a top-rated budget ryokan in Kyoto located in a residential area in Masuyacho, Higashiyama Ward. It’s a 10-minute walk from Kiyomizu Temple where you can see scenic Kyoto from above. It’s 5-km away from the wooden Nijo Castle. Apart from the typical features of ryokans, Kyo No Yado Sangen-Ninenzaka has tea and coffee-making facilities that guests can use. Its amenities include an open-air rooftop soaking tub overlooking Kyoto, a lobby lounge, and a beautiful botanical garden. Kyo No Yado Sangen-Ninenzaka price starts at $150 per night.
5. Ryokan Kyoto Shimizu
If you’re looking for the best ryokan in Kyoto that won’t break the bank, we can’t recommend enough Ryokan Kyoto Shimizu. For as low as $30 per night, you get to experience what staying in a ryokan in Japan feels like. Ryokan Kyoto Shimizu is specially designed for foreign budget travelers. Just a few minutes walk from Kyoto Station, Ryokan Kyoto Shimizu is also close by Nishihongwanji Temple, Sumiya Art Museum, Kyoto Tower Bath House, Ichihemi Shrine, Karamon Gate, Ryukoku Museum, and more.
That’s it for the best ryokans in Kyoto. Where are you planning to stay in? And if you’re looking for things to do in Kyoto, be sure to check out the best night tours in Kyoto as well as the best day tours in Kyoto.
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