Where to stay in Kyoto? The best areas and places to stay


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Looking for where to stay in Kyoto and short on time? Check out the traveler’s favorite hotels in Kyoto on Booking.com by clicking here!

Quick tip: they’re in high demand, so book quickly!

And if you want to learn all about the districts to stay in Kyoto, with a bonus of my selection of the best hotels, read this article.

Where to Stay in Kyoto: My Selection of the Best Accommodations

You’ve planned to visit Kyoto for your next trip and you’re wondering where to stay?

Indeed, choosing the perfect accommodation can be tricky with considerations like budget, location, and ease of transportation. Especially if you don’t know the city well!

As I know Kyoto very well, I have compiled a list of the best hotels in Kyoto for you, organized by neighborhood.

Whether you’re looking for a central hotel or a place to stay in a more traditional area, you’re sure to find the perfect option for your stay.

For each district, I will also tell you more about the best places to visit and nearby attractions.

With my recommendations, you can book your dream hotel in Kyoto right now and ensure an unforgettable trip!

And at the end of this article, you will also find my selection of budget hotels in Kyoto as well as my list of the best places to stay in Kyoto if you’re travelling with family.

So, which Kyoto neighborhood and hotel should you choose for your visit?

Let’s find out!

My Favorite Hotels in Kyoto

Here’s a quick recap of my favorite hotels in Kyoto, in case you don’t have time to read my detailed article.

You just need to click on the hotel name in orange to access the details and rates:

In Shimogyo District near Kyoto Station

Kyoto Station is located in Shimogyo district.

This is an ideal place to stay in Kyoto, as you can easily get around using public transport.

The are around the train station (one of the most important in Japan!) is particularly lively. There are plenty of shops, shopping centers, and many restaurants.

I recommend this district for staying in Kyoto:

  • Because it’s an excellent starting point for discovering the city by bus and subway
  • If you’re looking for a vibrant place
  • For easy day trips to surrounding areas like Osaka, Nara, Kobe by train.

The district is perfect for discovering:

  • Kyoto Tower, for a 360° view of the city from 130 meters high
  • Nishi Honganji Temple, a UNESCO World Heritage site.
  • Higashi Honganji Buddhist Temple
  • The streets of Kawaramachi-Dori and Shijo-Dori
  • Kyoto Aquarium
  • Kyoto Railway Museum, dedicated to the history of trains in Japan
  • Shosei-en Garden, with its lake and waterside pavilions.

Where to Stay in the Kyoto Station Area?

  • hotel androoms Kyoto Shichijo: Located right next to Kyoto Tower. Minimalist style double room with Japanese panels starting at 80$. Strong points: cleanliness, the onsen, very convenient location for sightseeing.
  • Onyado Nono Kyoto Shichijo Natural Hot Spring: Situated next to Shosei-en Garden. Double room with tatami flooring and zen decor starting at 115$, breakfast at 17$. Strong points: the very pleasant onsen, free ramen and ice cream in the evening, the hotel’s calm atmosphere (everyone must leave their shoes at the entrance). This is my top pick for its excellent value for money near the train station!
  • Hotel Granvia Kyoto: A 5-star hotel with direct access inside Kyoto Station. Very spacious double room with large windows starting at 145$, breakfast at 21$. Strong points: the indoor pool, the comfort of the rooms, the location.
  • THE BLOSSOM KYOTO: Located a 10-minute walk from Kyoto Tower. Cozy and comfortable double room starting at 160$, breakfast at 20$. Strong points: the onsen, the elegant and soothing design, the lounge area with free drinks and snacks. An excellent choice for a romantic stay in Kyoto!
  • THE THOUSAND KYOTO: This 5-star hotel is located right at the exit of the station. It features very spacious and modern rooms with a sitting area starting at 300$. Strong points: the friendliness of the staff, the refined decor, the quality breakfast. The best hotel for a luxury stay in Shimogyo (Kyoto)!
Hotel Granvia Kyoto Station Area Kyoto
Hotel Granvia, in Kyoto Station Area


In Gion District (Higashiyama)

Higashiyama district (which includes the famous Gion district) is located to the northeast of Kyoto central station.

It’s a great place to stay in Kyoto if you’re looking for a traditional and picturesque neighborhood, with its wooden houses and charming streets.

It’s very touristic during the day, as it’s home to many places to visit, but it becomes much quieter in the evening.

I recommend Higashiyama district for your stay in Kyoto:

  • To discover the authentic side of Kyoto
  • To immerse yourself in Japanese culture
  • If you want to stay in a ryokan during your trip to Kyoto: it’s a traditional Japanese inn, where you’ll sleep on a tatami.

Best things to do and see in Higashiyama district:

  • Stroll through Gion, the Geisha district
  • Follow the Fushimi Inari Taisha trail, to pass under the famous torii, large red gates arranged over several kilometers
  • Visit the temples (there’s no shortage of them!): Heian-jingu, Kodai-ji, Eikan-do, Kennin-ji, Shoren-in
  • Wander through the pedestrian and shopping lanes of Ninenzaka and Sannenzaka lined with small shops and restaurants
  • Walk along the Philosopher’s Path, which runs alongside a canal lined with cherry trees.

Here is my selection of the best hotels in the Higashiyama district

  • Tassel Hotel Sanjo Shirakawa: Located next to the temples in Maruyama Park. Double rooms, some with river views, starting at 80$, breakfast for 9$. Strong points: excellent location near the subway and Gion, complimentary evening aperitif, and very friendly staff. An excellent choice for accommodation in Kyoto!
  • NOHGA HOTEL KIYOMIZU KYOTO: Just a 5-minute walk from the Kyoto National Museum. Modern and comfortable double rooms starting at 120$, breakfast for 20$. Strong points: the rooftop, high-quality bedding, and excellent restaurant.
  • Kyo no Yado Sangen Ninenzaka: This ryokan offers Japanese-style rooms with tatami floors and futons, starting at 150$, breakfast for 9$. Strong points: the excellent traditional breakfast, adorable staff, terrace with a view of Kyoto, and the Japanese bath. This ryokan in Kyoto offers an excellent value for money!
  • Gion Elite Terrace: Situated in the heart of Higashiyama district. Cozy double rooms starting at 190$, breakfast for 9$. Strong points: the staff’s friendliness, design, and beautiful bathroom.
  • Kyoto Granbell Hotel: Ideally located in Gion district. Double rooms that blend modern and traditional elements, starting at 240$. Strong points: the very relaxing onsen, friendly staff, and excellent breakfast.
  • The Hotel Seiryu Kyoto Kiyomizu – a member of the Leading Hotels of the World: Located near many temples, this 5-star hotel offers elegant rooms with stunning bathrooms, starting at 630$, breakfast for 41$. Strong points: the lounge area with unlimited drinks and snacks, the rooftop bar, refined surroundings, and attentive staff. Simply the best luxury hotel near Gion!
The Hotel Seiryu Kyoto Kiyomizu Quartier de Gion Higashiyama
The Hotel Seiryu Kyoto Kiyomizu Quartier de Gion Higashiyama

In Nakagyo district

Nakagyo district, located north of the train station, is the bustling heart of Kyoto.

It’s very lively, with plenty of shops and restaurants, as well as several tourist attractions you shouldn’t miss.

This district is ideal for your stay in Kyoto:

  • If you’re looking for a place that’s buzzing both day and night
  • To be close to the train station and public transportation
  • To easily walk to other districts.

Nakagyo district is perfect for discovering:

  • Nishiki Market, with its fish, fruit, vegetable, and spice stalls
  • Nijo Castle from the 17th century, a UNESCO World Heritage site
  • Kamigamo-jinja Temple, one of the city’s oldest
  • Teramachi and Shinkyogoku shopping streets, which are located underneath arcades
  • The International Manga Museum.

Best Hotels to Stay in Nakagyo District (Kyoto)

  • Agora Kyoto Karasuma: Located just a 10-minute walk from the castle or the train station. Modern and well-appointed double room starting at $90, breakfast for $13. Strong points: comfortable beds, cleanliness, great location. My top pick for its outstanding value for money in central Kyoto!
  • Cross Hotel Kyoto: Located 1 km from Nishiki Market. Spacious double room with very comfortable bedding from $110, breakfast for $20. Strong points: central location by the canals, quality breakfast, spacious bathroom.
  • The Gate Hotel Kyoto Takasegawa by Hulic: Situated near the Kyoto Museum. Tastefully decorated double room with large windows and a view, starting at $150, breakfast for $18. Strong points: very pleasant bar and lounge, friendly staff, prime central location. Unbeatable value for a 5-star hotel in the heart of Kyoto!
  • The Royal Park Hotel Iconic Kyoto: Also located in the center of Kyoto, this luxury hotel offers bright and cozy rooms from $190, breakfast for $22. Strong points: free aperitif every evening, quality bedding, the onsen.
  • Ace Hotel Kyoto: This opulent 5-star hotel welcomes you in rooms that blend a modern and Asian style, starting at $250, breakfast for $28. Strong points: perfect geographic situation, design, very responsive staff.
  • MOGANA: A 5-star hotel located 2 minutes on foot from the castle. You will stay in rooms with a minimalist and futuristic style, starting at $300, breakfast included. Strong points: impeccable service, high-end amenities, peacefulness. This is my recommendation for a luxury stay in Kyoto!
The Royal Park Hotel Iconic Kyoto Nakagyo District Kyoto
The Royal Park Hotel Iconic Kyoto Nakagyo District Kyoto

In Arashiyama District, West of Kyoto

Arashiyama District is located west of Kyoto’s city center.

For me, it’s not necessarily the best area to stay in Kyoto on a first trip, as it’s quite far from the main attractions of the city center. This means you’d have to travel a lot by public transport every day to reach the heart of Kyoto.

However, being outlying also means more tranquility, which can be a good choice if you’re looking for peace and quiet in a more authentic area.

Arashiyama is also where you can wander through the famous bamboo forest that has become a true symbol of Kyoto (and thus very popular with Instagrammers!).

The surrounding hills are also home to very beautiful temples, including Tenryu-ji, dating back to the 14th century and listed as a UNESCO World Heritage Site.

Best Accommodations in Arashiyama District

  • Riverside Arashiyama: Located just a 10-minute walk from the bamboo forest. Double room starting at 95$. Strong points: the location at the foot of the hills, tranquillity, and cleanliness.
  • The GrandWest Arashiyama: Heart of the district location. Very spacious double room with tatami area starting at 140$, breakfast for 12$. Strong points: very quiet, the rooftop, an excellent welcome.
  • Homm Stay Nagi Arashiyama Kyoto By Banyan Group: Next to the station. Cozy and comfortable double room starting at 220$. Strong points: the exceedingly pleasant staff, bed comfort, proximity to great restaurants.
  • MUNI KYOTO by Onko Chishin: Riverfront location, 5 minutes’ walk from the bamboo grove. This luxury hotel offers you beautiful, very spacious, and modern rooms with balconies overlooking the garden. From 450$, breakfast for 49$. Strong points: the design, in-room amenities, delicious breakfast, free minibar. A truly beautiful hotel for a romantic stay in Kyoto!
Muni Kyoto by Onko Chishin Quartier de Arashiyama Kyoto
Muni Kyoto by Onko Chishin in Arashiyama District, Kyoto

Where to Stay in Kyoto on a Budget

If you’re on a tighter budget, here’s a selection of some budget-friendly hotels in Kyoto:

  • Piece Hostel Sanjo: Located in Nakagyo. Double room with shared bathroom from 40$. Strong points: cleanliness, rooftop, location.
  • Laon Inn Gion Nawate: Situated in Gion. Double room starting at 60$. Strong points: next to the metro, well-placed, very welcoming. A great budget-friendly choice for where to stay in Kyoto.
  • Imu Hotel Kyoto: Located in the station district. Double room starting at 70$, breakfast for 7$. Strong points: the staff’s kindness, a free glass of sake every evening, location. Another good address for cost-effective accommodation in the heart of Kyoto.
  • Hotel Pagong with M’s: Found in Nakagyo. Double room from 80$. Strong points: close to metro and buses, very clean, comfort.

In Japan, you can also find a very unique and quite unconventional type of accommodation: capsule hotels. Your room will be a simple, compact, individual cabin into which you’ll slide for the night.

It’s not for the claustrophobic, but the advantage is that this type of hotel is one of the cheapest in Kyoto. And even if you don’t want to stay your entire trip there, it’s worth trying for at least one night!

Here is my selection of the best capsule hotels in Kyoto:

  • Sauna & Capsule Hotel Rumor Plaza: Located in the Higashiyama district. Men-only capsules starting at 28$, breakfast included. Strong points: the indoor and outdoor public baths, cleanliness.
  • The Millennials Kyoto: Found in Nakagyo. Capsules for men and women from 30$, breakfast for 5$. Strong points: comfortable beds, location, super friendly staff.
  • TSUKIMI HOTEL: Also located in Higashiyama. Capsules for men and women from 30$. Strong points: extremely clean, the location, the lovely staff.
The Millennials Kyoto Hotel Capsule
The Millennials Kyoto Capsule Hotel

Family-Friendly Accommodation in Kyoto

A quick note before I share my selection of the best hotels for families in Kyoto: In Japan, it’s common for babies and children to sleep with their parents, even when they are older (9/10 years or more).

Make sure to check your reservation and confirm that you have selected a room with 3 beds or a sofa bed, as it’s often assumed that your child will sleep with you by default.

Also, be aware that most rooms in Japan are quite small, so it may not be possible to add an extra bed or a crib.

  • Cross Hotel Kyoto: Located in Nakagyo. A room for 4 with 2 single beds and a sofa bed starting at 150$, breakfast at 20$. Strong points: diverse breakfast options, location near transportation, shops, and restaurants. I highly recommend this hotel for a family stay in Kyoto.
  • Gion Elite Terrace: Also located in Gion. Family room with a double bed, sofa bed, and futon (baby cot available on request) starting at 220$, breakfast at 9$. Strong points: very friendly staff, modernity, the onsen.
  • GOOD NATURE HOTEL KYOTO: Situated near the Gion district. Triple room starting at 260$, breakfast at 20$. Strong points: room sizes, location.
  • Solaria Nishitetsu Hotel Kyoto Premier: Located right next to Gion. Triple room with river view starting from 274$, breakfast at 18$. Strong points: central location for exploring on foot and by public transport, quality of facilities, spacious room. This is definitely one of the best places to stay with your family in Kyoto!

Which is the Best Hotel in Kyoto?

If you’re looking for the best hotel in Kyoto, I can only recommend The Hotel Seiryu Kyoto Kiyomizu – a member of the Leading Hotels of the World.

And if you want something a bit more affordable but still excellent, you should book a night or more at THE BLOSSOM KYOTO or the Hotel Granvia Kyoto.

Where to Stay in Kyoto: The Summary Table of the Best Hotels

To give you a better idea of where to stay in Kyoto, whether in the city center or elsewhere, I’ve created a table summarizing all the hotels I talk about in this article. You can sort them by price or by neighborhood!

Hotel DistrictPrice (from)
Hotel Androoms KyotoTrain station80$
Onvado Nono Kyoto ShichijoTrain station115$
Hotel Granvia KyotoTrain station145$
The Blossom KyotoTrain station160$
The Thousand KyotoTrain station300$
Tassel Hotel Sanjo ShirakawaGion/Higashiyama80$
Nohga Hotel KiyomizuGion/Higashiyama120$
Kyo No Yado Sangen NinenzakaGion/Higashiyama150$
Gion Elite TerraceGion/Higashiyama190$
Kyoto Granbell HotelGion/Higashiyama240$
The Hotel Seiryu Kyoto KiyomizuGion/Higashiyama630$
Agora Kyoto KarasumaNakagyo90$
Cross Hotel KyotoNakagyo110$
The Gate Hotel KyotoNakagyo150$
The Royal Park Hotel Iconic KyotoNakagyo190$
Ace Hotel KyotoNakagyo250$
Riverside ArashiyamaArashiyama95$
The Grand West ArashiyamaArashiyama140$
Homm Stay Nagi ArashiyamaArashiyama220$
Muni Kyoto by Onko ChishinArashiyama450$
Piece Hostel SanjoCheap Hotel40$
Laon Inn Gion NawateCheap Hotel60$
Imu Hotel KyotoCheap Hotel70$
Hotel Pagong with M'sCheap Hotel80$
Sauna & Capsule Hotel Rumor PlazaCapsule Hotel28$
The Millennials KyotoCapsule Hotel30$
Tsukimi HotelCapsule Hotel30$
Crooss Hotel KyotoHotel for families150$
Gion Elite TerraceHotel for families220$
Good Nature Hotel KyotoHotel for families260$
Solaria Nishitetsu Hotel Kyoto PremierHotel for families274$
Book your trip now and save money!

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best area to stay in Kyoto
Best area to stay in Kyoto

Creator of the Voyage Tips blog, travel and photography lover. I give you all my best tips to plan your next trip.

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