Kyoto Tower – tickets, prices, discounts, timings, what to expect, FAQs

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In every ancient stone, every lingering scent of incense, and every rustle of a kimono, Kyoto unveils an enchanting canvas where centuries of tradition are depicted in vibrant strokes of elegance and grace.

The city is a snapshot of bygone eras, a monument suspended in time, where each cherry blossom petal whispers secrets of samurai and geisha, and each temple bell resonates with  the symphony of reverence.

Yet, Kyoto is not trapped in those bygone eras; it’s a city that embraces the future with open arms.

Modern skyscrapers rise alongside historic temples, and sleek bullet trains whisk through the city amidst cherry blossoms.

Jutting into the sky like a giant candle bridging traditional Kyoto aesthetics with modernity, offers a breathtaking experience, allowing you to immerse yourself in panoramic views of the sprawling city from its 100-meter-high (328-feet-high) observation deck.

This article covers everything you must know before booking tickets.

Where to book tickets

Kyoto Tower
Image: thrillophilia

Tickets are available online or at the attraction.

Online ticket prices tend to be cheaper than tickets at the venue.

When you buy online, you can avoid the long queues at the attraction’s ticket counters.

When you book early, you also get your preferred time slot.

Because some attractions sell a limited number of tickets, during peak days they may sell out. Booking early also helps avoid last-minute disappointments.

How do online tickets work

Visit the booking page, and specify your planned travel date, time slot, and the number of tickets, and book.

Once you complete the booking process, the tickets will be mailed to you.

You do not need to carry printouts.

Show the e-ticket on your smartphone at the entrance and walk in. Carry a valid ID

Kyoto Tower ticket cost

For the Tour, the adult ticket price for all ages above 15 is ¥954 (US$7).

Children aged between six and 14 years can gain access at ¥636 (US$4).

Students aged between 15 and 17 years can gain access at ¥767 (US$5). They must carry valid ID.

Infants under five are not charged anything.

Kyoto Tower tickets

Buying the tickets gets you access to the observation deck at 100 meters (328 feet), along with access to the telescopes at the observatory.

You get to view the ancient city from a modernist standpoint, along with the added perks of dining, shopping, and more!

Ticket Prices

Adult Ticket (15+ years): ¥954 (US$7)
Child Ticket (6 to 14 years): ¥636 (US$4)
Student Ticket (15 to 17 years): ¥767 (US$5)
Infant Ticket: Free


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Restaurants

There are a host of options to choose from for casual or fine dining.

Mirakuza

Mirakuza presents itself as a laid-back izakaya, a traditional Japanese pub-style eatery, offering a delightful blend of robust cuisine and refreshing beverages.

This dining establishment boasts a specialty in serving up fresh seafood, with a particular focus on delectable sushi and sashimi.

Beyond these, patrons can relish an extensive array of dishes, ranging from crispy tempura and flavorful noodles to a comforting duck meat hotpot brimming with tofu and vegetables.

The restaurant takes pride in its diverse selection of nihonshu, or sake, including a fine assortment of local varieties.

With an emphasis on affordability, Mirakuza ensures that patrons can enjoy a satisfying lunch for around ¥1000 (US$7) or a fulfilling dinner for approximately ¥3800 (US$25).

Mirakuza is located at the B1 level. The restaurant operates from 11 am to 10.30 pm, with the last orders taken at 9.30 pm.

Fushimi

Fushimi, another renowned restaurant, can be found on the tower’s basement level.

Popular among locals and tourists alike, this eatery is celebrated for its delectable Kyoto set meals, featuring an array of tantalizing dishes.

Alongside favorites such as tempura, sashimi, grilled beef, and hearty nabe hot pots,

Fushimi also serves an enticing selection of matcha green tea, preserved fish, kushikatsu, and konnyaku skewers.

However, the standout star of Fushimi’s menu is its meticulously crafted handmade tofu, a must-try for every visitor.

Additionally, indulging in the silky-textured soymilk doughnuts, known as ToNyu, dusted with brown sugar or condensed milk, is highly recommended for a complete culinary experience.

The restaurant, which is at the B1 level, serves lunch from 11 am to 3 pm and dinner from 4.45 pm to 10 pm, with the last orders taken at 9.30 pm.

Toh En

Indulge in a delectable Chinese dining experience at Toh En, one of Kyoto Tower’s highly recommended restaurants, renowned for its extensive range of Chinese delicacies.

Situated on the B1 level of the Building, Toh En not only offers delectable Chinese set course meals but also presents an enticing selection of a la carte dishes and all-you-can-drink specials, appealing to a wide array of guests.

The restaurant prides itself on skillfully incorporating meticulously chosen traditional Kyoto ingredients into its Beijing-style cuisine.

Among the top favorites on the menu are the flavorful Peking duck, the tangy sweet and sour pork, and the renowned mapo tofu, which continue to delight patrons.

Toh En operates from 11 am to 10 pm, with the last orders taken at 9.30 pm.

Tower Terrace

For those seeking a casual buffet-style dining experience, Tower Terrace, situated on the tower building’s third floor, is an ideal destination.

With picturesque vistas of Kyoto and the Kyoto Station, Tower Terrace offers a diverse buffet bar featuring a blend of organic local produce in both permanent and seasonal dishes on its menu.

Diners can indulge in a selection of Kyoto, Chinese, and Western-style delicacies, alongside an array of sweet treats, including pastries, cakes, and various desserts.

Tower Terrace’s renowned menu highlights include obanzai (picked ochazuke), a refreshing vegetable salad with strawberry and kiwi dressing, Vietnamese Pho, Chinese rice porridge, and kiln-baked pizzas topped with kujo green onions.

Tower Terrace is situated on the 3rd floor, and it serves breakfast from 7 am to 10 am, lunch from 11.30 am to 3 pm (with a 90-minute limit), dinner from 5.30 pm to 9 pm, and sweets from 3.30 pm to 5 pm.

Tower Terrace Dining Benishiro

Adjacent to the Tower Terrace buffet restaurant, on the third floor of the tower building, you’ll find Benishiro, another favored dining spot.

Benishiro is renowned for its elegant set course meals, served in a refined atmosphere with dedicated dining and seating areas. Here, guests can savor a fusion of Japanese cuisine infused with subtle Western influences.

Notably, all dishes at Benishiro are presented in the local kaiseki style, a traditional multi-course Japanese meal.

Patrons can also enjoy an assortment of beverages, providing a refreshing accompaniment to their experience.

The Café & Bar opens from 12 noon to 9 pm, with last orders at 8.30 pm. Lunch is served from 11.30 am to 2.30 pm, with last orders at 2 pm, while dinner is available from 5.30 pm to 9 pm, with last orders at 8.30 pm.

Sky Lounge ‘Kuu’

Kyoto Tower Sky Lounge ‘Kuu’
Image: kyoto-towerhotel.jp

At the tower’s third observatory level, you’ll find the stylish Sky Lounge “Kuu,” a sophisticated bar and pub that ranks high among the restaurants.

Renowned for its breathtaking panoramic views of Kyoto, this lounge offers both box and table seating options.

Transitioning from a daytime café to an evening destination, it serves light fare such as sandwiches, quiches, and pasta during the afternoon, transforming into a popular venue for enjoying beverages against the backdrop of the city lights.

Sky Lounge “Kuu” is not only celebrated for its wide array of alcoholic and non-alcoholic beverages but also for its appetizing sausage plate starter and pilaf, perfectly complementing the renowned gin-based drinks available.

Cafe timings are from 3 pm to 8 pm, with last orders at 7.45 pm, while bar time is from 6.00 pm to 11.00 pm, with last orders at 10.30 pm.

The Beer Garden

Kyoto Tower Beer Garden
Image: hankyu-hotel.com

During the summer season, the Beer Garden on the 10th floor atop Tower Hotel is a prime destination for those craving the refreshing taste of beer.

Boasting a seating capacity of 350 guests and an enviable location directly in front of Kyoto Station, this beer garden, nestled beneath the towering, offers a fresh perspective for visitors to enjoy.

In addition to the customary beer accompaniments like green peas and potatoes, the extensive buffet menu features over 30 selections of Western, Japanese, and Chinese dishes and desserts.

The drinks menu includes draft beer drawn from the keg, stout, shochu (a clear liquor distilled from sweet potatoes, buckwheat, and rice), Japanese sake, chuhai (a beverage made with shochu and carbonated water flavored with lemon), wine, and an array of soft drinks.

The Beer Garden operates from 5.30 pm to 9 pm, with last orders taken at 8.30 pm. It is exclusive to the summer season.


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Opening hours of Kyoto Tower

The Tower welcomes visitors all year round from 10 am to 9 pm.

The Tower is closed on 16 August.

How long does the Kyoto Tower take

The length of the tours depends on the activities you wish to indulge in.

Normally, a tour lasts around 2 hours if you wish to supplement your sightseeing with a meal.

Best time to visit Kyoto Tower

The best time to visit is just before sunset.

You can watch the city transition from day to night, painting the skyline in a warm orange glow before the night lights begin to twinkle.

If you want to leave the rush behind, the best time to observe the sacred city is at the crisp morning hour of 10 am.

Sunset occurs around 5 pm in the winter and 7 pm in the summer.

FAQs

Here are a few frequently asked questions:

Is the Kyoto Tower disability friendly?

Yes, wheelchair access has been added to the Tours.

When was the Kyoto Tower built?

This was built in 1964, during the Tokyo Olympics, by the architect Mamoru Yamada in the likeness of a Japanese candlestick.

Where can I book tickets to the Kyoto Tower observation deck?

Tourists can buy tickets online or at the venue, on the day of their visit. For the best experience we suggest you book your tickets online, in advance.

How tall is the Kyoto Tower?

At a towering height of 131 meters (430 feet), also includes an observation deck positioned at 100 meters (328 feet) above the ground.

Is telescope and dining lounge access included in the Kyoto Tower observation deck ticket price?

The observation deck ticket price does not cover food expenses and dining lounge accesses.
 
You are free to access the observatory’s telescope.

What to expect at Kyoto Tower

Observe the fascinating contrast this 131-meter-tall (430-feet-tall), slender, tapering tower produces against the city’s traditional, historical architecture.

Despite the touch of modernity, the architect Mamoru Yamada ensured that the tower still lies rooted in the imagery of Japan and is thus built in the likeness of a Japanese Candlestick.

Witness the colorful city materialize like sweeping brush strokes as you ascend to the tower’s observation deck with any of the nine elevators.

Towards the east, you will see the Kamo River meandering through the enchanting town of Kyoto.

To the west, the Higashiyama mountains, adorned with temples and cherry blossoms, make the landscape even more fantasy-like.

The observation deck also has telescopes and informational panels that describe the landmarks that may be seen from the tower, letting you jump head-first into Kyoto’s rich history and culture.

Dine at the restaurant in the tower that slowly rotates to give you breathtaking views of Kyoto while you feast on delectable Japanese cuisine.

Immerse yourself in the views of cultural assets such as Kiyomizu Temple and Toji Temple from the highest vantage point in Kyoto.

On a clear day, this tower, originally built in 1964, affords the opportunity to behold scenic vistas that stretch as far as the city of Osaka.

The 800-ton (800000 kg) Tokyo Tower sits atop a nine-story structure that houses a 3-star hotel and many stores for shopping.

How to reach Kyoto Tower

It is located directly opposite the Kyoto Railway Station.
Address: 721-1 Higashishiokojicho, Shimogyo Ward, Kyoto, 600-8216, Japan. Get Directions.

You can reach the Tower by public or private transportation.

By Train

The Tower lies directly across the street from the Kyoto Central Railway Station, North Exit.

The Kyoto Central Station is 30 minutes away from the Osaka Railway Station and 140 minutes from the Tokyo Railway Station.

The Shinkansen Train (Bullet Train) between Osaka and Kyoto takes only 15 minutes.

By Bus

The Kyoto Eki bus stop is a 2-minute walk from the tower.

By Car

Put your starting point here to navigate.

There are parking spots near the tower.

Sources
# Tripadvisor.com
# Kyoto-tower.jp
# Wikipedia.org

The travel specialists at Observation-decks.com use only high-quality sources while researching & writing their articles. We make every attempt to keep our content current, reliable and trustworthy.

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