Katsura Imperial Villa

Sightseeing information about Katsura Imperial Villa in Japan.


Katsura Imperial Villa4.2

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This former imperial villa is located along the west side of the Katsura River in western Kyoto. Built in the 17th century by an imperial family, this villa is a pure Japanese-styled structure surrounded with an expansive 7-hectare stroll garden. Bruno Taut praised highly of this structure on his visit in 1933, making this spot internationally well-known.

There are teahouses and the large pond with five islets connected by various types of bridges, and the surrounding garden is meticulously manicured. The villa and garden can be viewed only on tours, four times a day, held by the Imperial Household Agency. Making a reservation can be a little bit of a hassle, but this place is worth a visit when you have longer time in Kyoto.

Purposesightseeing
Airport/Sta.Osaka International Airport (about 32.6km) Google Transit

Reviews

5.0a week ago

The Katsura Imperial Villa is a must when visiting Japan. Gardens are completely beautiful, you can have a deep dive in how the emperadors enjoyed nature. The Villa’s architecture is so smart and delicate. The tour takes less than 1 hour and reservation is requiered to visit the Villa.

5.0a month ago

You need to apply at least 3 weeks in advance to come to this garden but it will be worth it. Definitely the best garden in Japan that I have seen. You will also need to bring your passport to enter. Our guide Miki was fluent in English, very friendly and welcoming, and extremely knowledgeable. Be aware that there may not be taxis available here (ie you may need to walk to the train station).

5.05 months ago

If you only have the chance to see one garden while you're in Kyoto, I suggest Katsura. A reservation is required, as it is for most of the famous gardens, and the tour moves quickly. If I could, I'd ask them to just let me sit in one place for an hour so that I could pain there, but such is life. If I make it back to Japan, I'll definitely go here gain.

5.04 months ago

Katsura is a beautiful example ok Japanese garden and traditional, historic Architecture. We went in late November and the leaves were changing color and it was incredibly beautiful. This place only allows you to go on a scheduled tour so check the timing ahead of time. This is good though, because it isn't overrun with people like most other temples in Kyoto. You can great great photos and have a more tranquil experience.

5.05 months ago

I have refrained from posting my pictures of Katsura Villa, simply because it is that beautiful of a place. I do not want to spoil it.

The landscape is a series of impeccably planned twists and turns, dips and rises. Walking between the multiple pavilions, every step reveals new scenery.

To visit, make a reservation on the imperial household agency website. Or walk in to try and get a ticket (there's a limited quota daily). Tickets cost 1000yen.

English tours are available at certain timeslots. Audio guides in multiple languages are also available, so no worries even if you can only get the Japanese tour. This is important because you can only enter with a tour.

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