InfoPlaces, Plans



Kyoto Nanzenji Ryokan Yachiyo
I really recommend staying in a ryokan (traditional guest house) for the experience of sleeping on a tatami mat and having a traditional multi-course dinner/breakfast. We got a room with a private hot tub onsen and balcony, and it was incredibly serene


Tenryuji Temple Shigetsu
a vegan meal served in a temple. So delicious and flavorful. Make a reservation in advance - you have to call for dinner, but can make a lunch reservation online. Spend some time and see the grounds too - it’s worth it to get the garden plus temple ticket, to sit by the pond from inside the temple

Sushi no Musashi
a conveyor-belt sushi restaurant in Kyoto train station. Usually a line, but worth it for a fun experience!

Nishiki Market
a covered morning market - some sit-down places, and some places to just try little bites. As in the rest of Japan — it’s rude (and enforced!) not to eat while you’re walking

Kagizen Yoshifusa Head Shop
a sweets shop with a cafe in the back - you can get a bowl of matcha and a selection of mochi / other desserts

Kyoto is a great place to try these savory pancakes. We went to Issen Yoshoku (kitchy/touristy, but fun), but also found Ginon Negiyaki Kana as another good option (more local/low-key)

Musoshin Ramen
delicious, quick ramen

I didn’t get here, but wish I had… the chef trained at Noma, and now makes Italian food in Kyoto. Make a reservation in advance!

Rutubo Izakaya
a pub/bar with a wide sake selection

Sentido Cafe
a small cafe in a mostly residential area - part of Kyoto’s 3rd wave coffee scene


Higashiyama Jisho-ji (Silver Pavillion)
you can take the #100 express bus here. It’s a lovely walk through a rock garden, forest, and temple complex at the top of the Philosopher’s Path

Philosopher’s Path
a walkway along a small canal, there are little shops and cafes to explore along the way (including a paper shop that’s over 100 years old). There’s a quiet temple called Hōnen-in Temple that’s a few minutes off the path, if you have time. Monk is along the path too

Tenryuji Temp le
even if you don’t get the meal there, it’s a beautiful, peaceful spot. And it’s near the ︎

Arashiyama Bamboo forest
a walk through a bamboo grove, and has a lovely park adjacent to it

Inari Shrine
similar to the bamboo forest, if you make it past all the people taking photos at the beginning, it’s a meditative walk up a mountain through thousands of red shrines. At a point near the beginning, there’s a dirt path going up on the right - you’ll find a small temple up there, and a mostly empty path along a bamboo grove. At the end of it, stop at Kafe Inari for a delicious bubble tea and the coziest upstairs room 


Ishibe-koji Alley
this is a bit hard to find (with no English signage, but Google Maps will get you there), and feels like such a magical secret. It’s a beautiful, historic little area that’s super quiet and mostly residential. It honestly feels like stepping back in time in the winding, back streets, and was completely empty when I went there around 7pm.

historic, entertainment district. There are a ton of shops and restaurants along the Main Street off the bridge, but turn to the south and wander around the back streets — they’re usually quiet, and atmospheric with red lanterns filtering light over wooden buildings

Pontocho Alley
a beautiful street, along the bank of the canal in Gion. It’s prettiest/most atmosphere in the evening

Ukiyo-E World’s Smallest Museum
a one (small) room woodblock print museum that’s only open when the artist “feels like it.” It’s super tiny, but an interesting experience

Maiko Antiques
on the same block as the Ukiyo-E World’s Smallest Museum, a crowded vintage store with old Japanese ad prints (and much more)

Tokyu Hands
department store with rotating popups



Signe Schloss 2019 — Brooklyn, New York