This was our view from Kyoto Tower just as the sun set after we arrived in Kyoto in 2019 after spending the first few days in Tokyo. If you are visiting Kyoto, Kyoto Tower is a must see to get a bird’s eye view of the city and surrounding countryside.
Kyoto Tower, built in 1864, is an older tower that stands 131 meters up in the heart of Kyoto, making it a well known landmark for all. There is an observation deck at the 100 meter mark that costs roughly $10 USD to get up to, but unlike the larger towers in Tokyo and other cities, is much smaller to maneuver through, so just keep that in mind when you are heading up to the top.
The tower is a great opportunity to see the city from up high and get a better understanding of how the countryside surrounds the city. Hours are limited these days (from 11 AM to 9 PM, last group allowed up at 8:30 PM) due to the Covid pandemic, so make sure to check with the Kyoto Tower’s website to get the latest hours, prices, and any other advisories they may have and if you are allowed to make your way up to the top.
And visiting the top of the tower, there are a ton of great restaurants around the area, so get there, see the city at night from the highest point in the area, and then get some incredible food (and cold beverages) to cap off a good evening once you arrive in this ancient city. Seeing the ancient from high up is a great way to begin a trip to Kyoto before you head out and see everything it has to offer.