Getting Around Kyoto, Japan

Planning a trip to Kyoto City?  Pondering how you should get around the city?  Let me break it down for you.

  • Bicycles are easy, cheap, healthy, and the best way to see and get around Kyoto.  Kyoto City is not that large and you can easily get from one point to the other without getting lost.  It is also not that small where you can just simply walk everywhere.  C’mon, experience how it’s like to be a local in Kyoto City and hop onto a bicycle and ride with the wind!
  • Public transportation is largely available, useful and decently priced.  It can be very confusing and overwhelming, especially if you are not used to any other large city’s public transportation systems.  Can be quite costly, but there are various kinds of passes to help you save your money during your trip here.
  • A car is not necessary in Kyoto.  The traffic is not bad so it’s ok if you decide on getting a car, but it really isn’t necessary.  There are many parking lots available; some for a fee, some for free.  Why not spare some gas and hop onto a bicycle and break a sweat!

If I had to paint a picture for you, picture this: you are riding a bicycle through Kyoto, along a river, along a beaten path, breathing the beautiful air, seeing traditional structures, awing at the urban downtown center.  Or, picture yourself staring at maps, checking the internet for directions every hour, getting on the wrong bus/train, transferring at the wrong station, accidentally missing your stop, amongst commuting crowds.  Or, you can also picture yourself seeing Kyoto from the other side of a window on a road/street rather than on the sidewalks, riversides, etc.

There you go!  How to get around Kyoto City in a nutshell.  A more detailed post on Kyoto’s modes of transportation is on the way!


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