1. 6 Must See Instagram Spots in Downtown Kyoto to Photograph

6 Must See Instagram Spots in Downtown Kyoto to Photograph

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Where to take a photogenic picture in Kyoto?



What is a purpose of your visit? Don’t be harassed by this question, I’m not an airport officer.  



People travel for having local foods, meeting new people and learning different cultures. How about photographs? After Instagram and other major social network apps were introduced, they made many people interested in taking a picture more often, especially during travels.



Kyoto City is the perfect place to take a photogenic picture (which probably can gain lots of likes on Instagram). You’ll never be completed visiting all great spots in the city, so just to make new options for you, here is my list of the best spots in Kyoto where you can take stunning pictures.




■1. Yasaka Kōshin-dō



Yasaka Kōshin-dō is a small temple, but it’s full of colors.



The colorful ball-like thing is called “Kukuri Zaru”, means a monkey with bound feet and bands. According to the Kōshin belief, the monkey represents the control of greedy or playful minds in human.



Why is it a monkey? A monkey is considered as a messenger of a god of Kōshin-dō. There are many monkey-motif goods at the temple. I bought the Kukuri Zaru, wrote my wish on his tummy and tied him up with a string. Hope he’ll deliver a good luck to me!



Just be sure to take a picture of the gathering of small monkeys. The most colorful place in Kyoto for sure!


Yasaka Kōshin-dō

Google Map

9AM – 5PM Everyday

Free Admission





■2. % ΔRΔBICΔ Kyoto Higashiyama


“%” is the symbol of one of the most stylish and trendy coffee shops in Kyoto.


Kenneth Shoji, a Japanese owner, has been expanding the business since the original store was established in Hong Kong, 2012. The location of the first overseas store was chosen to Kyoto by the owner’s desire. Now there are flag stores in China, Kuwait and Dubai, and new locations are announced to be opened in 2017.



I picked a simple choice, Drip Blend (500 yen). Not too sour, not too bitter, great aroma came into my nose. It’s an easy taste for non coffee drinkers. 


Take a stylish photo with the symbol %. Arabica will probably become the next Starbucks in the near future.




% ARABICA Kyoto HIgashiyama

8AM – 6PM Everyday





■3. Entoku-in Temple


Entoku-in Temple is known as the place where Nene Hojo faced the end. 


Nene is a wife of Hideyoshi Toyotomi, one of the most remarkable wen in Japanese history. After his death, Nene decided to build the temple and lived there for 19 years.



The main garden of the temple is not gorgeous, but it’s simply magnificent. 



You can visit Kodai-ji Temple after Entoku-in Temple from this green road of stairs.



Entoku-in Temple

Google Map

10AM – 5PM Everyday

Adult: 500 yen / Students(-18): 200 yen




■4. Yasaka Shrine


The symbolic site of Gion is recommended to see at the night.



There are less people visiting to the shrine at the night. In contrast to temples, shrines open 24 hours and it’s free admission to enter shrines.


In the center of Yasaka Shrine, there is the main hall where many seasonal events take place at. The main hall is lighted up with a hundred of paper lanterns donated by stores, hotels and maiko/geiko. Since Yasaka Shrine is known as the shrine of public entertainment and art, so many geiko and maiko worship at the shrine.






Yasaka Shrine

Google Map

24 Hours Everyday

Free Admission


◎Less than 5 minutes walkable distance between 1, 2, 3 and 4 spots! (Higashiyama Area)




■5. Cafe Soiree



One of the most retro cafes in Kyoto is located at Shijo Street and Kiyamachi Street. Cafe Soiree was established in 1948 after WWII ended.


The most ever-popular menu at Soiree is Fruit Punch (650 yen). This is a beautiful sweet you should photograph on your trip.


The mixture of five colors of jellies, cherry, lemon, kiwi and a bit sweetened soda looks magical. 




Cafe Soiree

Google Map

1PM – 7:30PM Closed on Mondays




■6. Issen Yoshoku


In the Gion area, there is one spot where displays signboards and decors look remarkably outstanding even at night.



Would you like to have an enjoyable atmosphere and great light meal? Issen Yoshoku would be a perfect place for those who say yes.



The owner’s collections of antique and vintage things are exhibited at every walls there. Everything is unique and has some kind of humorousness. 


While I was into his collections side by side, Kyoto-style Okonomiyaki (650 yen) was served to me with Ramune (210 yen), sweet soda.




This okonomiyaki is an only-one food menu at the store. You can have beer and other soft drinks including ramune.



The most unique collection of his is a female mannequin. Right beside me, Ms. Hitomi Kuroki was sitting like she was my companion.

Find your favorite objects to photograph among many!




Issen Yoshoku

Google Map

Weekdays: 11AM – 3AM / Weekends and holidays: 10:30AM – 10PM







How was it? 6 of the best photogenic spots in Downtown Kyoto.


The six places are close to each other. You can visit all the spots in a day.




Also, there are plenty of places not included on this list that are worth checking out such as iconic Kiyomizu Temple, Tofuku-ji Temple, Ponto-cho and Ishibe-koji.


If you haven’t taken a trip to this fabulous city be sure to stop by at all of these worthwhile sights, it is full of photo spots!

Make an online reservation to have a precious time with Geisha!