Sign in for a personalized experience.
Japan Guide Homepage
Travel
Living
Forum
Restaurants
Shopping
Jobs
Friends
News
-
Essentials
-
Sightseeing
-
Accommodation
-
Transportation
-
Restaurants
-
Shopping
-
Budget Travel
-
Questions

Home - Travel - Sightseeing Guide - Kansai - Kyoto - Northern Kyoto
Shugakuin Imperial Villa 
# 47   of 59 most visited
sights in Kyoto

jump to:   access  -  admission  -  hotels  -  ratings  -  tours  -  links

Shugakuin Imperial Villa (Cw@{, Shugakuin Rikyū) was built in the 17th century by Emperor Gomizuno and is now managed by the Imperial Household Agency. It consists of the Upper, Middle and Lower Villa areas, each featuring gardens and buildings of the traditional imperial style.

Shugakuin's name comes from a former temple built on the same site in the tenth century. The Imperial Villa was constructed between 1655 and 1659, with a palace for Gomizuno's daughter added ten years later. More recently in 1964, the surrounding farmlands were bought by the Imperial Household Agency. They are leased out to local farmers who continue to work the fields.

Shugakuin is only accessible to the public through guided tours. The tour must be booked in advance and lasts about one hour and twenty minutes. It takes visitors through all three villas, and points out the significant garden features and structures. The tour is only offered in Japanese, however, an English audio guide is available.

As with all Imperial properties, it is not possible to enter any of the buildings. However, for those interested in Japanese design and architecture, several buildings are left open along the tour route so that visitors can see inside. Important features such as elevated tatami mats and painted panels are pointed out by the audio guide.

Any Questions? Ask them in our question forum.

How to get there
The closest station to Shugakuin is Shugakuin Station on the Eizan Railway Line, from where the villa's entrance gates can be reached in a 10 to 15 minute walk.

From Kyoto Station, take the JR Nara Line to Tofukuji Station (3 minutes) and transfer to the Keihan Line to its terminus, Demachiyanagi Station (10 minutes). From there, take the Eizan Railways to Shugakuin Station (7 minutes). The entire trip costs 620 yen and takes about 40 minutes.

How to get to and around Kyoto

Hours and Fees
Free tours of Shugakuin Imperial Villa are held five times daily at 9:00, 10:00, 11:00, 13:30 and 15:00 in Japanese only. No tours are held on Sundays and national holidays. Most Saturdays are also unavailable. Check with the agency for an up to date schedule.

To book a tour, you need to apply in advance with your passport at the Imperial Household Agency's office in Kyoto Imperial Park. Reservations are often possible on the same day as the intended visit. The agency office is open Monday to Friday from 8:45 to 12:00 and from 13:00 to 17:00.

Additionally, a small number of tour spots are available for reservation over the agency's website (see links below), however, these often get booked out. Online reservations must be completed several days before the intended visit.

Advertisement

Hotels and Ryokan
Kyoto offers a wide range of accommodation for all budgets and tastes, including historic ryokan, Western style hotels and low-budget hostels. Among the most attractive districts to stay are the Kyoto Station area, the city center around Shijo Street and the Higashiyama District.
Search Hotels
Sponsor Hotels
Arashiyama Hanaikada
A little, superior ryokan right near Togetsukyo Bridge in Arashiyama. Free transfer at JR station. Private onsen bath.
Recommended Hotels around Kyoto - with lowest rates by selected hotel reservation websites
Backpackers Hostel Ks House Kyoto
One of Kyoto's most popular hostels. A ten minute walk from Kyoto Station.
Reserve through
Agoda or Booking
Hotel Granvia Kyoto
Located inside Kyoto Station, this is Kyoto's most convenient 4-star hotel.
Reserve through
Agoda or Booking
Hyatt Regency Kyoto Hotel
Elegant luxury hotel located near Sanjusangendo Temple.
Reserve through
Agoda or Booking
Khaosan Kyoto Guest House
Cheap and popular hostel located in the heart of the city near Kawaramachi Station.
Reserve through
Agoda or Booking
New Miyako Hotel Kyoto
Reasonably priced 3-star hotel located just across the street from Kyoto Station.
Reserve through
Agoda or Booking
Royal Park Hotel The Kyoto
Modern hotel along Sanjo Street close to Pontocho and other dining options.
Reserve through
Agoda or Booking

Tours and Packages
JR Tokai Tours
Your Shinkansen and hotel package professional. Fantastic Kyoto tours from Tokyo at excellent prices!
Kyoto Tours
Various tours and travel packages for Kyoto and surroundings.
Kyoto Kamo River Terrace Dining
Easy online reservations through Japanican.

User Ratings
Ratings for Shugakuin Villa:
japan-guide.com Rating:
  best of Japan  
User Rating (by 75 users):
89/100
  recommended

Best rated sights nationwide (out of 781):
71.  Pilgrimage Trails (Mount Koya)   89/100
72.  Hasedera Temple (Asuka)   89/100
73.  Kubota Museum (Fuji Five Lakes)   89/100
74.  Keta Taisha Shrine (Noto Peninsula)   89/100
75.  Kokedera (Kyoto)   89/100
76.  Shugakuin Villa (Kyoto)   89/100
77.  Matsuyama Castle (Bitchu-Takahashi)   89/100
78.  Miho Museum (Koka)   89/100
79.  Ise Shrines (Ise Shima)   89/100
80.  Hot Springs (Noboribetsu)   89/100
Most visited sights nationwide (out of 913):
358.  Prison Museum (Abashiri)   169
359.  Sand Dunes (Tottori)   168
360.  Takamatsu Castle (Takamatsu)   168
361.  Spain Mura (Ise Shima)   168
362.  Todoroki Valley (Tokyo)   168
363.  Shugakuin Villa (Kyoto)   166
364.  Science Museum (Osaka)   166
365.  Hot Springs (Kinugawa Onsen)   165
366.  Hanatoro (Kyoto)   165
367.  Godaido (Matsushima)   163

User Feedback
We strive to keep japan-guide.com up-to-date and accurate, and are always looking for ways to improve the user experience. If you have any updates, suggestions, corrections or opinions, please let us know:

English Links
Imperial Household Agency
Official English website.
Application for Visit
English application page.

Japanese Links
Imperial Household Agency
Official website.
Application for Visit
Japanese application page.

Online Reservations
Hotel
 
Car
 
Flight
 
Bus

(check-in)

Related Pages

News and Reports
April 15, 2014
Kyoto Cherry Blossom Report
by raina
April 11, 2014
Kyoto Cherry Blossom Report
by sean
April 8, 2014
Kyoto Cherry Blossom Report
by sean
April 6, 2014
Kyoto Cherry Blossom Report
by raina
April 3, 2014
Kyoto Cherry Blossom Report
by raina
April 3, 2014
Uji Cherry Blossom Report
by schauwecker
April 1, 2014
Kyoto Cherry Blossom Report
by sean
March 29, 2014
Kyoto Cherry Blossom Report
by scott
More reports...

Related Questions
1-day city bus pass with Shugakuin Villa
 1 reaction, last updated 26 days ago
Kyoto Shugakuin and Katsura Reservations
 3 reactions, last updated 435 days ago
Kyoto Sanjo Eki to Shugakuin Eki
 3 reactions, last updated 649 days ago
Shugakuin Imperial Villa
 5 reactions, last updated 759 days ago
Tour for Shugakuin Imperial Villa
 1 reaction, last updated 938 days ago
Arashiyama bamboo forest
 10 reactions, last updated 4 hours ago
Shugakuin to Enryakuji
 3 reactions, last updated 2 days ago
Snow near kyoto
 2 reactions, last updated 3 days ago
Kyoto in 2 days
 1 reaction, last updated 3 days ago
Kyoto Bus Day Pass
 7 reactions, last updated 11 days ago
Sagano Scenic Railway open on Wednesday?
 7 reactions, last updated 12 days ago
Transport from Airport to Kyoto
 19 reactions, last updated 13 days ago
Reservations at Kikaku-tei ryokan, Yase
 2 reactions, last updated 20 days ago
Kibune
 2 reactions, last updated 24 days ago
Restaurant near Ginkakuji
 2 reactions, last updated 25 days ago
Jidai Matsuri?
 2 reactions, last updated 28 days ago
Path from Kiyomizudera to Yasaka Shrine?
 4 reactions, last updated 28 days ago
Higashiyama District/shop hours for New...
 1 reaction, last updated 42 days ago
From Ohara to Pontocho? Bus 17?
 2 reactions, last updated 50 days ago
Temples never renovated in Kyoto?
 3 reactions, last updated 56 days ago

Travel
Living
Japan A-Z
Community
Sightseeing
Accommodation
Transportation
Shopping
Essentials
Regions
Prefectures
Cities
Working
Studying
Living Cost
Apartments
Arts and Crafts
Entertainment
History
Religion
Etiquette
Food
Language
Tradition
Question Forum
Classifieds
Trip Reports
Member Area
Sightseeing Guide
Hokkaido
Sapporo
Otaru
Hakodate
Noboribetsu
Niseko
Furano
Daisetsuzan
Shiretoko
more...
Tohoku
Sendai
Matsushima
Hiraizumi
Hachimantai
Hirosaki
Lake Towada
Dewa Sanzan
Aizu
more...
Kanto
Tokyo
Yokohama
Kamakura
Hakone
Nikko
Kawagoe
Kusatsu
Narita
more...
Chubu
Nagoya
Mount Fuji
Izu Peninsula
Matsumoto
Kiso Valley
Takayama
Shirakawa-go
Kanazawa
more...
Kansai
Kyoto
Osaka
Nara
Kobe
Himeji
Mount Koya
Kumano
Ise Shima
more...
Chugoku
Hiroshima
Miyajima
Okayama
Kurashiki
Tottori
Matsue
Iwakuni
Hagi
more...
Shikoku
Takamatsu
Kotohira
Naoshima
Matsuyama
Kochi
Tokushima
Naruto
Iya Valley
more...
Kyushu
Fukuoka
Nagasaki
Kumamoto
Mount Aso
Beppu
Kagoshima
Kirishima
Yakushima
more...
Okinawa
Honto
Kume
Miyako
Yaeyama
Copyright © 1996-2014 japan-guide.com All rights reserved - Last Page Update: January 22, 2014
home - site map - privacy policy - terms of use - contact - employment - Lɂ‚ - advertising