Day Trip to Osaka
In just around 40 minutes from Kyoto Station you can be at Osaka’s main station, Osaka Station. If you are traveling with kids, we recommend visiting Expo City or Universal Studios Japan (USJ).
Expo City is about an hour from Kyoto Station. It is one of the largest shopping complexes in Japan. Adults and children can enjoy a whole day at the shopping mall, aquarium, movie theater and more! There is also a small amusement park.
Universal Studios Japan (USJ)
USJ is one of the five Universal Studio theme parks in the world. It is the most visited theme park in Japan.
USJ creates new things one after another, such as the Harry Potter area and Minion Park. After going once, you will surely want to go again and again. In 2020 , Japan’s leading game company, Nintendo, will have an area called Super Nintendo World. You can go and meet Mario and Luigi!
Day Trip to Nara
In just about 50 minutes by train, you can go to Nara, home to not just one, but three World Heritage sites. If you are interested in Japan’s history, Nara is a place you don’t want to miss.
There are so many deer in Nara Park! It is said that the deer here are sent from god. It’s amazing to see a thousand deer walking gracefully among all the people.
You can purchase “shika senbei” (deer food) and when the deer notice you holding them, many will approach you. Please be careful when feeding them, they may accidentally bite your finger. Also be careful of their antlers. They are very used to people, but as they are wild animals, please use caution and don’t approach them like you would a pet.
Day Trip to Tokyo
If you are traveling to Japan, you may want to visit the capital of Japan, Tokyo! It takes about 2 hours by the Shinkansen (bullet train). As it is only about a 2 hour train ride, a one day trip is definitely possible, but Tokyo is so big it is actually better if you can spend a night or two when you go. Tokyo is a fun place for everyone. We will tell you two recommended sightseeing spots for families.
Tokyo Disney Resort
At Tokyo Disney Resort there are two theme parks, Disneyland and Disney Sea. While we recommend both parks, if you are traveling with kids and only have one day for Disney, Disneyland may be better. You can enjoy parades, attractions and buildings with Disney character motifs. However, if you have been to Disneyland somewhere else and want a Disney experience unique to Japan, you should go to Disney Sea. It was created in the image of both foreign countries and famous Disney movies like The Little Mermaid and Aladdin. You can enjoy a more adult-like atmosphere, but kids can have a great time, too. Also, at Disney Sea you can purchase alcoholic beverages, something not available at Disneyland.
Are you familiar with Studio Ghibli? Best known for its animated feature films like My Neighbor Totoro, Ponyo, Spirited Away, etc, it is a name that most if not all Japanese kids are familiar with. The Ghibli Museum in Mitaka is an art museum where you can experience Japan’s leading animation world.
Please note, tickets are not available on the day of your visit. All admissions to the museum are by advance reservation only.
Ghibli Museum Information
Day Trip to Hiroshima
Hiroshima has two World Heritage sites, the Atomic Bomb Dome and Itsukushima Shrine. You can go to Hiroshima in just 1 hour and 40 minutes by Shinkansen (bullet train).
Recently, “Shimanami-kaido,” which connects Japan’s main island Honshu to the island of Shikoku, is also a very popular spot for tourists, especially those interested in cycling.
Many Options for Day Trips from Kyoto
This time we gave you tips on traveling from Kyoto to other prefectures. You can easily experience parts of Japan different from Kyoto with your kids! If you would like to experience somewhere with an atmosphere different from Kyoto, one day trips can be just what you need.