Here’s How You Can Make the Most Out of Your Solo Trip in Kyoto in the Spring
Skip the expensive transportation fares!
People who have visited Japan know that its strict laws have allowed the country’s streets to remain safe. In fact, Japan is so safe that it’s not too surprising to see tourists and locals dining, walking, or traveling alone. This kind of security attracts a lot of solo travelers to go to Japan.
If you’re planning on traveling solo to Kyoto during the sakura season, read on. We list down the best spots to visit as well as useful tips that you can bear in mind to make your trip there the best one yet.
1. Take the night bus to Kyoto instead of riding the train or plane.
Kyoto isn’t only known for its cultural heritage sites, but also for its picturesque sakura views during springtime. Riding the train or plane to Tokyo during this time will most likely be expensive. Opting to take the night bus, however, will only cost you half the price that you usually pay for transportation.
The night bus departs from the Yaesu exit of Tokyo Station. The direct trip usually takes around eight hours. Some buses might take longer because they also stop at several cities prior to Kyoto.
In addition to this, these buses take care of their female passengers by dividing the bus into male and female sections.
2. After arriving at Kyoto Station, put your extra luggage inside a locker.
Chuo exit of JR Kyoto station.
If you’re coming from Osaka or Kansai Airport, you can take the JR trains.
After arriving at JR Kyoto Station, you can freshen up at their nearest restroom, and store your excess luggage inside the available coin lockers for safekeeping. This will make your trip light and hassle-free.
First stop: Keage Incline
The Keage Incline is one of Kyoto’s most famous sakura viewing spots. You can go there in the early morning to beat the tourist crowds, and enjoy the sakura trees all by yourself.
You can get there through a few minutes’ walk from the Nanzenji Bus Stop via Bus No. 5 to Nanzenji Temple.
Next stop: Nanzenji Temple
Only a five-minute walk away from the Keage Incline is the Nanzenji Temple where you can admire the beauty of the sakura flowers against a traditional scenery.
Last stop: Tetsugaku no Michi
Continuing on through the back streets, you will arrive at the Tetsugaku no Michi or the Philosopher’s Path. This walkway is a kilometer-long path that’s lined up with hundreds of sakura trees. The reflection of the sakura blooms in the canal is also a refreshing sight.
Other than these spots, there are also several interesting souvenir shops and cafes that you can visit in the area. You can also check out the Ginkakuji (Silver Pavilion), which is found at the end of Tetsugaku no Michi.
In case you want to explore further, you can save on transportation expenses by buying the Kyoto City Bus and Kyoto Bus One-day pass. You can find the ticket center right in front of the Chuo exit of Kyoto Station where you got off from the night bus.
Bus Ticket Center
Although Japan provides a safe environment for traveling, it still pays to be careful and vigilant when you’re traveling alone. Keep your wits about you, and always proceed with caution.