If you are planning a trip to Kyoto for business or pleasure, one of the best options in terms of accommodations that you may seek to consider is that of one of countless Ryokans that can be found in the area! A ryokan are traditional Japanese inns that have been around since the 8th century A.D. These inns are not only super convenient to stay at, but they are also beautiful and boast a ton on unmatched features for guests to enjoy! Here are a few of the top ryokans that you may want to consider staying at when you visit Kyoto.
Tawaraya is easily one of the best ryokans in not only Kyoto, but in all of Japan. In fact many people even consider Tawaraya to be one of the finest accommodations in the entire world. The location itself is a place of breathtaking wonder, and the service is simply unmatched. When you opt to stay at Tawaraya, you will find yourself surrounded by the scenic beauty of the surrounding gardens, relaxing in you beautiful room and enjoying some of the finest food in Kyoto. It is also conveniently located to downtown, so if you are looking to slip out and take in some of the area’s action, you are in the right spot to do so!
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A traditional inn - Ryokan in Kyoto, Japan
Hiiragiya can be found located right across the street from Tawaray. Though the Hiiragiya is a bit less intimate in terms of its scale than some of the other area ryokans, this one is elegantly polished and refined and numerous guests from around the world flock here every year. In the newer rooms, you will immaculate splendor, but if you are looking for a bit more traditional character, be sure to opt for one of the rooms in the older wing which feature a wabi-sabi patina!
Designated a “hidden ryokan,” Tamahan truly gives off the vibe that you are hidden away in the middle of a bustling city. Conveniently located on a pedestrian-only alley in Kyoto, named Ishibei-koji, Tamahan ryokan is easily one of the best with regards to not only its awesome location, but also boasting huge rooms that overlook the stunning gardens and provide you with elegant museum-quality decorations throughout the ryokan. While this one is a bit on the higher end of the price scale, you will be treated like royalty at Tamahan.
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Arashiyama Benkei can be found directly across the river from Mt. Arashiyama right on the banks of the Oigawa river. The area is blessed with an incredible view of some of the most breathtaking natural scenery in all of Japan and each season on brings more beauty throughout the year. At Arashiyama Benkei can you can enjoy some of the most delicious cuisine available in Kyoto of which is made with only local ingredients. Arashiyama Benkei even features an on-site onsen where the waters are supplied by the Arashiyama hot springs. If you are seeking to enjoy some of the local history and culture, this is a prime spot to enjoy as there are several temples and shrines in the area that are perfect to enjoy.
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Located about 30 minutes from Kyoto, and up in the quaint hamlet of Kibune (only a valley over from Kurama which is home to a famous temple), the Ugenta ryokan is a rare and spectacular find. The Ugenta ryokan is exquisitely divided into two different units (which is perfect if you are looking you to avoid crowds as they only accept two groups each night). One of the units is westernized with modern furnishings and gorgeous wood abound and the other side of the unit is more traditional Japanese with gorgeous touches of old Japan wherever you look. Both of the units comes complete with private outdoor baths and also indoor baths, with the outdoor baths overlooking the stunning mountainous scenery. If you are seeking a romantic getaway in Kyoto, this is going to be a fantastic option to consider!
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Hoshinoya is a ryokan that can be found centrally located on the bank of the Oigawa river just at the base of Mt. Arashiyama (which was once a profound summer vacation spot for Japanese nobles). Here, you can easily take a quick little boat ride from the Togetsu Bridge directly over to the Hoshinoya Kyoto ryokan where you will be able to find yourself being able to fully take in and experience all of the most stunningly noble atmospheric pleasures that the area’s scenery provides those who visit Kyoto. The ryokan features a charming little open-air tearoom as well as a beautiful water garden which is strikingly popular.
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If you are seeking to take advantage of enjoying an onsen during your stay in Kyoto, you may want to consider staying at Togetsutei which features one right on site! One of the most famed ryokans in the area, Togetsutei was created over a century ago and is is noted to be one of the most peaceful and tranquil ryokans in all of Japan. The onsen baths here are filled from the natural hot spring waters from Arashiyama, and the food that is prepared at Togetsutei is simply unbeatable. You can truly be able to enjoy it all at Togetsutei!
There are a number of great reasons why you should opt to consider staying at a ryokan on your next visit to Kyoto. They are absolutely wonderful ways to be able to take in all the scenic beauty and quiet luxury of the region, while also being sure to keep you close enough to the city that you can get out and about with ease! Although a good many people choose to not even leave their ryokan and simply just enjoy everything that are provided for them all inclusively! Ryokans can be found all around Japan, but as we have clearly gone on to show in this brief article, some of the finest ones can be found in bustling city of Kyoto!