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5 Straightforward Kyoto Hikes – Household Can Journey


Kyoto is rightfully well-known for its lovely temples and shrines. However, are you want us and get slightly bored with seeing temple after temple? Fortunately, there are a lot of simple Kyoto hikes you may take pleasure in with your loved ones! Surrounded by lush, inexperienced mountains on all sides, Kyoto has many family-friendly climbing trails to maintain you and your youngsters sane between all of the temple visits.

The timing of our household journey to Japan was lucky as our little man was 14 months previous and was fairly content material to be carried in a backpack provider. Our daughter, who was 3 years previous, loved climbing on her personal, however she nonetheless needed to be carried often. So, we introduced a second backpack provider to make it extra snug for everybody when she acquired bored with climbing.

The easy hike up Mt. Daimonji was one of our favorite easy hikes in Kyoto, Japan.
We cherished the view on the Daimonji Mountaineering Path.

This publish incorporates compensated hyperlinks.

5 Household-Pleasant Kyoto Hikes

With two youngsters in backpack carriers and no stroller, listed below are the Kyoto climbing trails we loved throughout our 7 days in Kyoto with youngsters:

1. Fushimi Inari Shrine

The Fushimi Inari Shrine is devoted to Inari, the Shinto god of rice. At all times open and with no admission payment, Fushimi Inari will not be solely an important shrine in Kyoto however it is usually one of many high websites to go to in Kyoto.

With 1000’s of sensible orange and black torii gates lining the path up Mount Inari, this simple Kyoto hike will probably be an expertise your loved ones received’t quickly neglect. In truth, I’d say it’s one of the best Kyoto climbing path of all of them.

The Family Can Travel team enjoys an easy family hike at the Fushimi Inari Shrine during a family trip to Kyoto.

We arrived on the Fushimi Inari Shrine shortly after 8 am and we have been stunned that it was already fairly busy. After passing the primary temple buildings, we began our journey by way of the torii gates.

Stage 1 – Fushimi Inari Mountaineering Path

The Fushimi Inari climbing path began with stairs… oh so many stairs. The steps are properly maintained and flat, making it simple for youthful youngsters with power to stroll up them.

It took us roughly 35 minutes to succeed in the Yotsutsuji intersection. Right here, you may cease and deal with the youngsters to a matcha ice cream (inexperienced tea taste) whereas taking within the sweeping views of Kyoto beneath.

If it’s essential to cease climbing and feed your youngsters, this is a wonderful place to cease as many of the small shrines alongside the best way have indicators that say no sitting on steps or curbs. That is the purpose the place most individuals visiting the Fushimi Inari Shrine flip round, however we stored going and advocate you do as properly.

Elevated views of Kyoto from the easy Kyoto hike a the Fushimi Inari Shrine.
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Stage 2 – Fushimi Inari Mountaineering Path

At this stage, the crowds begin to filter out and the torii gates turn into much less frequent. The remainder of the climbing path is a loop by way of the timber and is well worth the effort.

There aren’t any views on the high of the Fushimi Inari Shrine and the torii gates turn into much less frequent, however you’ll take pleasure in a peaceable, lovely forest hike. We took the youngsters out of their backpack carriers close to the highest so they may take pleasure in a little bit of the hike with out worrying about them getting in the best way of the crowds.

A 1-year old enjoys playing on the steps on a family hike around Fushimi Inari Shrine during a family trip to Kyoto.

As common, getting out of a metropolis permits the locals to calm down and be themselves a bit extra. The Japanese folks showcased their fondness for youngsters on this simple Kyoto hike.

One candy older woman stopped our daughter and gave her a fold-up fan, which she completely cherished. And, our little man determined to throw a tantrum close to the very high, however a pleasant shopkeeper from a close-by teashop invited us in, which put an enormous smile on his face! 

A 3-year old girl stops to admire a fan given to her by a nice lady on the Fushimi Inari Shrine hike in Kyoto.
Our 3-year previous cherished her new fan.

After we arrived again down on the fundamental Fushimi Inari Shrine, thus finishing our household hike, we couldn’t consider how busy it was!! This may be one benefit of travelling with small youngsters, given that you could usually get to sights forward of the crowds. If you’d like any likelihood of getting your image with the torii gates with nobody else within the image, get to this simple Kyoto climbing path as early as you may.

Enjoyable Mountaineering Exercise for the Youngsters at Fushimi Inari Shrine

See what number of fox statues your youngsters can discover alongside the best way. Foxes have been considered Inari’s messengers and most of the shrines have fox statues in consequence. 

A 3-year old girl admires a fox statue at the Fushimi Inari Shrine on one of hte best easy hikes in Kyoto.
Our 3-year previous discovers a fox on the Fushimi Inari Shrine hike.

Fushimi Inari Shrine Hike Stats

Beginning and ending on the Fushimi-Inari subway station, it took us 2.5 hours to finish the three.4 mile / 5.4 km hike and our whole elevation acquire was 1017 ft / 310 m.

2. Kurama to Kibune

Kurama and Kibune are small cities north of Kyoto that are separated by a densely forested mountain ridge. The hike between the 2 cities is extremely pleasurable for anybody in search of a simple hike close to Kyoto.

For the youngsters, taking the prepare to Kurama will probably be half the enjoyable. Taking the Eizan Railway from the Demachiyanagi subway station to the Kurama Station is a shocking, above floor prepare experience which winds by way of the northern suburbs of Kyoto earlier than coming into a well-treed mountain valley.

a family enjoys the scenic train ride from Kyoto to Kurama, Japan.
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Stage 1 – Kurama to Kibune Path

As soon as on the Kurama station, you cross a collection of memento stands in your approach to the Kankiin Buddhist Temple. Right here you may have a alternative of beginning to hike or to take a funicular a part of the best way up.

The funicular takes you to a brief, moderately flat pathway to the primary temple complicated. We skipped the cable-car and entered the Buddhist Temple complicated to start the hike.

A funicular in the forest near the Kurama train station in Japan.
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The hike to Kurama-dera (the primary temple) took us about 40 minutes and was very steep upwards with many stairs. It was too steep for our small youngsters, so we have been grateful we may carry them in our backpack carriers!

The hike winds by way of an attractive dense, previous progress forest which offers quite a lot of shade (very welcome on a scorching, sunny day!). Fortunately, there are a lot of small temple buildings, shrines and benches alongside the best way which provide you with an excuse to cease and relaxation or to feed the youngsters. 

Celine Brewer, of the Family Can Travel blog, carries her 1 year old on an easy hike between Kurama and Kibune.
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As soon as up on the Kurama-dera temple, there are a lot of good spots to cease for lunch or a snack (carry your individual). Make sure to soak in the great thing about the complicated and the views of town beneath.

Stage 2 – Kurama to Kibune Path

When you’re able to proceed climbing, comply with the climbing path alongside to the left and comply with the indicators for Kibune. Look ahead to an English/Japanese signal for Kibune – while you see it, take an image to recollect what the Japanese symbols for Kibune are (or save this weblog publish) as all of the indicators past this level will probably be Japanese solely.

The Kurama-dera temple can be reached on an easy hiking trail between Kurama and Kibune, Japan.
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The hiking trail sign showing the Japanese letters for Kibune.
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If you attain the very high of the ridge, you may have the choice of continuous alongside the loop, which takes you again all the way down to Kurama, or you may take the climbing path to Kibune.

The path to Kibune is steep downwards and alternates between steps and a pure grime pathway with tons and many tree roots. If they’re succesful, your youngsters can have enjoyable strolling over the cool trying roots.

The easy hike between Kurama and Kibune runs through a beautiful forest. Many trees have extensive above ground roots systems like this one.
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Kibune is a captivating little mountain city with a Buddhist Temple. From right here you may have the choice of climbing again to the Kurama prepare station or you may take a brief bus experience to Kibuneguchi Station, the place you hop again on the Eizan Railway again to Kyoto (which is what we did).

The bus cease is a 4 minute stroll downhill from the place the climbing path ends. Don’t neglect to carry some pocket change for the bus.

Celine Brewer, of FamilyCanTravel.com, stands on an orange bridge after an easy family hike to Kibune, Japan.
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Enjoyable for Youngsters – Kurama to Kibune Hike

This job must be fairly simple, however see in case your youngsters can spot Tengu – a “heavenly canine” present in Japanese folks faith and are thought-about a kind of Shinto god. (They need to see them within the memento stands in Kurama, very shortly after getting off the prepare.) 

A Tengu is a “heavenly dog” found in Japanese folk religion and are considered a type of Shinto god.
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Mountaineering Stats – Kurama to Kibune Path

Ranging from the Kurama rail station to the city of Kibune, this simple Kyoto hike took us 2 hours and 6 minutes. Our whole climbing distance was 2 miles / 3.3 km and our whole elevation acquire was 954 ft / 291 m. 

3. Monkey Park Iwatayama

House to over 100 macaque monkeys, this simple hike takes you to Monkey Park Iwatayama, one in all Kyoto’s most uncommon sights.

After crossing the Togetsukyō Bridge, we discovered the signage to get to the doorway to the Monkey Park Iwatayama to be a bit complicated. Merely flip proper after crossing the bridge and you will see the doorway to the park…

The pathway for this steep 20 minute climb is partly paved, however massive sections have been over grime. The stroll is properly treed and we discovered it to be fairly pleasurable. Close to the highest of this hike is a playground – preserve this in thoughts when it’s essential to bribe your youngsters to go away the monkeys on high…

A Kyoto playground with swings found on the hiking trail to the Monkey Park Iwatayama.
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On the high of the climbing path to Monkey Park Iwatayama, you will see a lot of folks and monkeys standing round taking a look at one another. There’s additionally a constructing with chicken-wire fence home windows so you may “safely” feed the monkeys

A observe on security – watch your youngsters intently as a few of these monkeys are fairly aggressive. Shortly after we acquired to the highest, our daughter was standing just a few ft from a monkey and a workers member got here to chase it away, telling us it was aggressive.

Later, we went inside and purchased a small bag of peanuts for her so she may feed them from contained in the constructing. She cherished feeding the monkeys, who would attain in and seize a peanut out of her hand.

One of many monkeys was visibly irritated and took a swipe at her face after grabbing the peanut. It missed, fortunately, however I used to be much more cautious with how shut she acquired from that time onwards.

A 3-year old girl feed a peanut to a macaque monkey at the Monkey Park Iwatayama in Kyoto.

Please observe that strollers are usually not allowed on the hike. There’s a a spot to park your stroller inside the park near the ticket window.

Enjoyable Exercise for the Youngsters

See if they’ll hear or see a macaque monkey within the timber on the hike as much as the highest.

Mountaineering Stats – Monkey Park Iwatayama Path

Ranging from the doorway gate it took us about 20 minutes to climb the 0.6 mile / 1 km stroll to the highest of Monkey Park Iwatayama. The full elevation acquire was 446 ft / 136 m. Though we deem this as an “simple Kyoto hike”, some folks could discover the path slightly steep.

Spending a while in Tokyo as properly? Listed here are one of the best issues to do in Tokyo with youngsters.

4. Daimonji

Each August, the Obon Pageant is well known in Kyoto to honor the spirits of 1’s ancestors. The fruits of this pageant is a collection of 5 big bonfires lit on the hillsides which encompass town.

The fireplace lit on Mt. Diamonji-yama is among the hottest as it’s extensively seen all through town. Fortunate for us, Mt. Diamonji-yama is offered all through the remainder of the yr as a enjoyable, simple Kyoto hike with nice views of the historic metropolis beneath.

A giant bonfire is lit on Mt. Diamonji-yama for the Obon Festival in Kyoto, Japan.
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To search out the trailhead for the Daimonji hike stand in entrance of the doorway of the Silver Pavilion. There will probably be a highway in your left (going north). Merely comply with this highway…

One wonderful thing about this brief hike is its shut proximity to Ginkakuji, the Silver Pavilion. This lets you go to an attractive temple and get some train in the identical outing.

The Daimonji hike was, as we’ve got constantly discovered all through Kyoto, actually nice with dense timber and the sounds of birds the entire manner. The climbing path was a mixture of paved, pure path, concrete and picket steps. It may be fairly steep in spots, however this hike was brief sufficient that our 3 yr previous daughter almost hiked the entire manner up herself. 

Dan Brewer, of Family Can Travel, enjoys an easy Kyoto hiking trail on Mt. Daimonji with his 3-year old daughter.

Relying on the day, you will get some fairly unimaginable views from the highest of the Daimonji hike. Even when it’s cloudy, it’s nonetheless quite a lot of enjoyable to see the hearth pits they use to create the Obon pageant bonfires.

The fire pits on Mt. Daimonji used for the bonfires in the Kyoto Obon festival.
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Enjoyable for the Youngsters on the Daimonji Mountaineering Path

Our youngsters discovered some cool snails on this hike. See what number of your youngsters can discover!

A 3-year old girl examines a snail she found on an easy hike near Kyoto.

Mountaineering Stats for the Daimonji Hike

Every leg of this hike took our household roughly 40 minutes to finish (1 hour and 20 minutes spherical journey). We measured the Daimonji hike to be 1.9 miles / 3.1 km lengthy and our whole elevation acquire was 1033 ft / 315 m. 

5. Kami-Daigoji

That is the longest and highest of our simple Kyoto hikes, so examine the stats earlier than trying it. In case you are bodily succesful, your efforts will probably be rewarded with an attractive temple complicated on the high with nice views of town.

The Daigoji Buddist temple is cut up into two elements: a decrease temple (Shimo-Daigo) and an higher temple (Kami-Daigoji). This simple hike takes you up the mountain to the higher complicated.

To search out the trailhead, stand in entrance of the primary entrance to the decrease temple and comply with the highway to your proper. Take your first left and comply with this path alongside the perimeter of the temple (look ahead to the well-known 5 story pagoda between the timber!). Shortly after starting the hike, you’ll come throughout the ticket workplace the place it’s important to pay to enter the complicated. 

A father carries his toddler in a backpack carrier while hiking in Kyoto on the Daigoji trail.
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The hike to Kami Daigoji was positively a exercise. It begins out with a modest incline, however then then it turns into principally steps after which switchbacks. At this stage it’s an uphill grind to get to the highest, however no less than there have been loads of small temples, benches and/or fallen over timber to cease at alongside the best way for a relaxation. 

Celine Brewer enjoys an easy Kyoto hike to Kami Daigoji temple.
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A happy 3-year old girl enjoys a family hike to the Kami Daigoji temple near Kyoto, Japan.

The Kami Daigoji temple complicated was enjoyable to discover and we discovered some benches in entrance of the primary constructing to cease for a snack and benefit from the view and our environment. There was an ideal view from the best temple and we have been lucky to see so many maple timber simply beginning to flip. 

The Family Can Travel team enjoys a snack after hiking to the Kami Daigoji during a family trip to Kyoto, Japan.
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Enjoyable Mountaineering Exercise for Youngsters – Kami Daigoji Path

We discovered a particularly properly camouflaged brown frog alongside the aspect of the path. See in case your youngsters can discover one too!

a well camouflaged brown frog seen on the easy Kyoto hike to the Kami Daigoji temple.
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Mountaineering Stats – Kami Daigoji Hike

Ranging from the trailhead close to the Daigoji Buddhist temple, the 4 mile / 6.5 km round-trip took us roughly 3 hours to finish. Our whole elevation acquire was 2,109 ft / 643 m.

Practicalities for Mountaineering with Youngsters in Kyoto

Mountaineering with a Stroller in Kyoto

None of those hikes are stroller pleasant, even for strollers with large sports activities wheels. Convey a provider of some kind as an alternative. We use the Deuter Child Consolation 3 (good for teenagers as much as 40 lbs). In case your little one continues to be a child, one other good possibility is an Ergo child provider, which we used typically when our children have been smaller. If you happen to should use a stroller, try our weblog publish on household pleasant walks in Kyoto.

Methods to Gown Mountaineering with Youngsters in Kyoto

Gown in layers. The temperature could be moderately chilly within the mornings or within the deep shade of the forest, so you’ll want to carry jackets for everybody. However you’ll want to begin shedding layers because the hikes begin getting steep or the recent noon solar comes out.

Brings A lot of Water

Convey sufficient water for the household, particularly if the youngsters are going to affix in and do some climbing. These hikes can get laborious and it’s simple to get thirsty within the scorching Japan solar. We advocate bringing just a few massive water bladders tucked away in your backpack or provider.


Celine Brewer is a devoted household journey blogger with a profound ardour for serving to households create unforgettable adventures collectively. Her weblog blends charming journey narratives with sensible ideas for family-friendly locations and having fun with lively journey with youngsters. As a mom of two, she understands the distinctive challenges of touring with youngsters and gives priceless insights to empower dad and mom.

When Celine is not touring along with her husband and two youngsters, she’s both engaged on one in all her three journey websites (Household Can Journey, Child Can Journey and Journey Banff Canada) or out having fun with the majestic Canadian Rockies her household calls dwelling.


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