Kyoto - Holiday facts and Information

Holiday facts and information about Kyoto

General facts

Trip Preparation

Trip Preparation

Language

Japanese

Currency

Japanese Yen

Best travel time

In Kyoto during spring and autumn, the weather is relatively warm suitable for traveling with a temperature of about 15 degrees. During the summer it gets quite hot in Kyoto with temperatures at around 30 degrees. The winters however are very cold and may hinder tourists to travel to certain areas.

Visa requirements

When travelling to Japan it is possible to obtain an individual visa or a group Visa. You can get the group Visa by joining travel groups and it is relatively easy to get, however the personal Visa will take longer to acquire.

Communication

The voltage in Kyoto is 100 volts, and the frequency is 60 Hz. To use electrical devices it is necessary to bring adaptors. Domestic mobile phone will not work in Japan, therefore it is recommended to buy pre-paid phones whilst in Japan. These are accessible at the airport and are relatively cheap.

Country and People

Country and People

Traditions and Culture

Customs / Culture / Traditions Kyoto has all kinds of festivals therefore the whole city is quite lively, and residents are very hospitable. The traditional festivals have been held for the past 1000 years attracting many tourists. A main tradition in the culture of Kyoto is the “Kyoto traditional forestry Honjikomi event” this occurs on September 4th every year and is an event demonstrating the history and culture of the past 600 years of Kitayama’s traditional forestry industry.

Religion

Most people in Kyoto practice the religion Buddhism and polytheism.

Getting around

Getting around

By bus

In Kyoto visitors can travel with the bus, railway and subway lines. The main transportation manner in the city is with the railway. Most tourists however, take the bus as the municipal bus network also has private carriers within the city providing tour buses. Kyoto’s buses also have announcements in English therefore they are the most convenient transportation manner for visitors.

By plane

Kyoto does not have its own airport therefore travels can fly to “Kansai International Airport” or “Itami Airport” in “Osaka Prefecture”. These airports receive international and domestic flights daily. From Kansai Airport travelers can take the “Haruka Express” operated by “JR West” which travels to Kyoto Station in 73 minutes. It is also possible to rent a car at the airport and drive to Kyoto via one of the nine national highways.

By taxi

Taxi prices vary according to which taxi company you travel with, however the prices are not extremely different.

Discover and Enjoy

Discover and Enjoy

Discover and enjoy

Lifestyle / Sights In Kyoto there is a lot you can visit and discover. In Kyoto there are about 2000 shrines and temples. An unforgettable experience are the “Historic monuments of Ancient Kyoto” in which about 20 % of Japans national treasure lies. Other sites worth visiting are one of the many museums and gardens or the “Iwatayama monkey park.”

Events

The Japanese New Year is also one of the biggest festivals of the year during which people celebrate and have parties for the first 20 days of January.One of the biggest festivals in Japan hosted in Kyoto is the “Gion Festival” which occurs during July. During this time people light lanterns and walk along the streets. There are many more festivals occurring each month in Kyoto such as the following: -“Setsubun Matsuri” held on February 3rd. -“Hinamatsuri” which is a doll festival where local girls dress up in traditional Heian costumes. This is held on March 3rd. -“Geisha dances” held during the month of April. -“Kurama-no-hi Matsuri” held on October 22nd which shows spectacular fireworks.

Food

Kyoto is famous for its local “Kaiseki” cuisine. An experience which is recommended to adventurous eaters is to try an “omakase” which is a menu determined by the chef which is an unforgettable experience. The local dishes in Kyoto are usually served with fresh seasonal vegetables. Some specialties which are very recommendable are: “Yudofu” which is tofu boiled in hot water mixed with “kombu” and various sauces. “Okonomiyaki” which are savory pancakes with seafood, meat or cabbage flavored with Japanese sauce. The local sushi is a very famous Japanese specialty which is highly recommendable. It can be eaten with many different vegetables and seafood. There are a lot more local specialties in the Kyoto cuisine- something for everyone.

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