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How to travel between Koyasan and Osaka

Koyasan is most conveniently accessed by Nankai Railways from Osaka's Namba or Shin-Imamiya Stations. Take the Nankai Koya Line from either station to the Gokurakubashi terminal station. A few limited express trains operate directly to Gokurakubashi (80 minutes, 1680 yen, five trains per day). Otherwise take an express or rapid express train (100 minutes, 890 yen, departs every 20-30 minutes), most of which require a transfer at Hashimoto Station along the way.

At Gokurakubashi, transfer to the cablecar which travels up the mountain to Koyasan. The ride takes about five minutes and costs 500 yen. From the top station, it is a ten minute bus ride into the town center (300 yen to Senjuinbashi bus stop). Note that it is not permitted to walk along the street which connects the cablecar station with the town center.

To save money consider using a Koyasan World Heritage Ticket or Kansai Thru Pass.

Above fees and schedules are subject to change. Be sure to check current yen exchange rates.

Getting around

The temples of Koyasan form a small town on the wooded mountain, about 1000 meters above sea level. Most visitors arrive by cablecar to Koyasan Station, which is a ten minute bus or taxi ride from Koyasan's town center. Note that it is not permitted to walk along the street between the cablecar station and the town center.

The town of Koyasan is relatively flat and many of its attractions are easily explored on foot. Most of the sites, including the Garan, Kongobuji and the Reihokan Museum are located in the town center, a short walk away from the Senjuinbashi intersection. Among the main attractions, only Okunoin stands outside of the town center at the eastern end of the town. At the western end of the town stands Daimon Gate, the traditional point of entry to Koyasan.

Three bus routes serve the town: the main line connects Koyasan Station with Okunoin, a second line connects Koyasan Station with Daimon Gate, and a third line connects Daimon Gate with Okunoin. All bus lines pass the Senjuinbashi intersection at the center of town, where the Koyasan Tourist Information Center is located.

Koyasan Bus Network:

An excellent audio guide is available from the Koyasan Central Tourist Information Center for a 500 yen rental fee. The audio guide is provided in five languages (English, Japanese, Korean, Chinese and French) and may be checked out between 8:30 and 16:30 to be returned by the following morning. It offers detailed explanations about almost all the sites of interest on Koyasan.

Passes and Tickets

The following discount tickets are available for visitors to Koyasan. Note that the Japan Rail Pass does not cover access to Koyasan or transportation inside Koyasan.

  • Combination Ticket (2500 yen)
    This ticket provides admission to many points of interest on Koyasan, including Kongobuji, the Kondo Hall and Daito Pagoda at the Garan and the Tokugawa Mausoleum. It also entitles its holder to participate in a jukai service at Daishi Kyokai. The ticket is available at the Koyasan tourist information offices and can be used over multiple days.
  • Koyasan World Heritage Ticket (3080 yen) - more details
    The Koyasan World Heritage Ticket is available from Nankai Namba, Shin-Imamiya and Tengachaya Stations for 3080 yen and includes a round trip ticket from Osaka to Koyasan, unlimited bus travel within Koyasan town and discounted admission to Kongobuji, the Reihokan Museum and the Kondo Hall and Daito Pagoda at the Garan. The World Heritage Ticket is valid over two consecutive days.
  • Kansai Thru Pass (4300 or 5300 yen) - more details
    The Kansai Thru Pass may pay off if you visit Koyasan in combination with other places in the Kansai Region. Alternatively the pass can make sense to those who stay at Koyasan for more than two days, as the Koyasan World Heritage Ticket is only valid on two consecutive calendar days, while the Kansai Thru Pass can be used on non-consecutive days.
  • 1-Day Bus Pass (840 yen)
    A one day bus pass provides unlimited use of buses on Koyasan on one calendar day. It can be purchased at the upper station of the Koyasan Cablecar.

Hotels around Mount Koya

Top rated on Mount Koya
Budget:
    • Koyasan Guest House Tommy
      Budget-friendly
      Located 500 metres from Kongobu-ji Temple, Koyasan Guest House Tommy in Koyasan provides rooms with air conditioning and free WiFi. This 1-star guest house offers luggage storage space. The guest house features family rooms. At the guest house, each room comes with a desk, a flat-screen TV, a private bathroom, bed linen and towels. Guest rooms will provide guests with a fridge. Nyonindo is 1.4 km from Koyasan Guest House Tommy. The nearest airport is Kansai International Airport, 40 km from the accommodation.
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    • Koyasan Shukubo Fudoin
      Mid-range
      Located in Koyasan, within 800 metres of Kongobu-ji Temple and 1.7 km of Nyonindo, Koyasan Shukubo Fudoin provides accommodation with a garden and as well as free private parking for guests who drive. This 3-star ryokan offers luggage storage space. The ryokan features family rooms. Guest rooms at the ryokan are equipped with a TV and a safety deposit box. All guest rooms include bed linen. Guests at Koyasan Shukubo Fudoin can enjoy a vegetarian breakfast. The nearest airport is Kansai International Airport, 41 km from the accommodation.
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    • Shukubo Koya-san Eko-in Temple
      Mid-range
      A 1000 year-old Buddhist temple, Shukubo Koya-san Eko-in offers Japanese-style accommodation, a beautiful garden and free WiFi. Guests are free to attend Buddhist morning services, the Goma fire ritual and meditation. Rooms feature tatami-mat flooring, comfortable futon bedding and paper sliding screens. They are fitted with an LCD TV and a safe. Bathroom facilities are shared, and the public baths are open 16:00-22:00 and 06:00-09:00 daily. Shukubo Temple is close to other ancient Buddhist buildings such as Kongobu-ji Temple, which is a 10-minute walk. The Ichi-no-Hashi entrance to the ancient Okuno-In Temple is a 3-minute walk away. Guests can experience group meditation, and they can write Buddhist texts with a brush and ink on scrolls at their room. They can also go hiking in the scenic surroundings of Koya-san Eko-in. The temple has a lounge with a PC corner. Meals are served at the guest room at scheduled times and feature Buddhist vegetarian cuisine, and gluten-free meals can be requested at an additional fee. Groups of 4 or more persons dine at the Japanese-style dining room, where chairs can be provided upon advance request.
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    • Jokiin
      Mid-range
      Located in Koyasan, a UNESCO World Heritage Site, Jokiin offers free private parking. All rooms include a flat-screen TV. Certain rooms have a seating area where you can relax. Rooms have a shared bathroom. Jokiin features free WiFi throughout the property. There is luggage storage space at the property. Guests can participate in the morning prayers upon request. The property is a minute's walk from Kongobu-ji Temple. The temple building is also situated nearby.
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    • Kumagaiji
      Budget-friendly
      A Buddhist temple lodging accommodation, Kumagaiji lies amid mountains in the sacred Koyasan area. It features classic Japanese architecture and a tranquil atmosphere, adjoining a temple built in 837. The property serves traditional vegetarian meals. Featuring minimalist lines and a serene beauty, rooms come with a tatami (woven-straw) floor and traditional futon bedding. A TV and a low table are provided. Bathroom and toilet are shared with other guests. Certain rooms feature garden views. Kumagaiji offers free WiFi in all rooms. A limited number of free tablet rental is available on a first-come, first-serve basis. Luggage can be stored at the property at no extra charge. Guests can participate in Buddhist liturgy sessions and Homa rituals in the morning, free of charge. Activities such as Sutra copying and the tracing of Buddhist images are offered at an additional charge. Healthy vegetarian meals are served in the dining room for dinner and breakfast. The property is a 2-minute walk from bus stop Karukayado-mae, which is a 15-minute bus ride from the Koyasan Cablecar Station. The famous Kongobu-ji Temple is a 12-minute walk away.
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    • Sojiin
      Luxury
      Located at the heart of Mount Koya, Sojiin offers Japanese-style accommodations in a Buddhist temple. Vegan meals are served for dinner and breakfast. Sakai is 42 km from Soji. The nearest airport is Kansai International Airport, 40 km from the property.
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    • Yochi-in
      Budget-friendly
      Located in the sacred Mount Koya area, Yochi-in is a historic temple and an accommodation for visitors. Just to the left of entering sanmon gate, there is a stone garden created by the famous Mirei Shigemori and designated a natural monument by the Japanese government. Guests can experience temple activities such as meditation, sutra copying and tracing of Buddhist deities at an additional charge, if reserved in advance. Guests can also participate in morning prayers, which do not require reservation. All rooms at Yochi-in are Japanese-style and feature tatami (woven-straw) floors. Traditional futon bedding, a TV, fan and heater are provided. Bathroom and toilet are shared with other guests. The spacious public baths feature a hot tub. On-site luggage storage is available. Guests with reservations that include a meal can enjoy delicately prepared homemade vegetarian meals featuring seasonal dishes. Convenience stores are located within a 3-minute walking distance from the property. It is a 10-minute walk from the famous Kongobuji Temple. Guests can visit the Buddhist temple, Danjogaran, just a 3-minute walk away.
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    • Koyasan Saizenin
      Mid-range
      Located in the sacred Koyasan area, Saizenin offers simple accommodation surrounded by mountains and many temples. Originally developed as a lodging for the templesf pilgrims, it conducts Buddhist services every morning that guests can attend. Nankai Koyasan Train Station is a 15-minute drive away. Fitted with tatami (woven-straw) flooring and traditional futon bedding, each room comes with a flat-screen TV and a seating area. A safety deposit box is also provided. The Koyasan Saizenin features luggage storage and free parking. Kansai International Airport is 40 km away. Nankai Namba Train Station in Osaka is a 2-hour train ride from the proprety. Healthy vegetarian meals are served in the guest room or in the dining room for dinner and breakfast.
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    • Koyasan Zofukuin
      Budget-friendly
      Open from 2017 and located in Mount Koya, a UNESCO World Heritage Site, Zoufukuin offers a traditional Japanese-style accommodation housed within a Buddhist temple. Guests can reach Zoufukuin in 10 minutes by bus from Koyasan Station to Reihokanmae Bus Stop. Koyasan Reihokan Museum is a minute's walk from Zoufukuin, while Kongobuji is a 5-minute walk away. Koyasan Daishikyokai is a 2-minute walk away and Koyasan University is 5 minutes away on foot. Kansai International Airport is 40 km from the property. All rooms are Japanese-style rooms and include bathrobes. The bathroom is shared. Guests with a meal plan will be provided with local traditional Buddhist vegetarian cuisine. There is a convenience store within a 3-minute walk from the property.
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    • Koyasan Onsen Fukuchiin
      Mid-range
      Located at the heart of Mount Koya, Koyasan Onsen Fukuchiin Shukubo offers Japanese-style accommodations in a historical Buddhist temple. Guests can refresh in the public hot-spring baths, experience Shakyo Sutra transcriptions or attend Buddhist morning services. Koyasan Cable Car Station is a 10-minute drive away and guests can take the public bus to Koya Police Station Bus Stop, which is located right by the property. The Japanese-style rooms feature tatami (woven-straw) floors and Japanese futon bedding. Each comes with a safety deposit box and a TV. Some rooms come with garden views and a private toilet. All guests share bathrooms. There are a public indoor and open-air hot-spring baths. You can relax by looking out into the traditional garden made by a famous landscape artist, Shigemori Mirei, and purchase gifts at the souvenir shop. Daily newspapers are provided. Luggage storage is available at the front desk. Traditional Buddhist vegetarian dishes are served for breakfast. Guests who wish to have dinner must make a request in advance. All meals are served at the guests' rooms or the dining room. Fukuchiin Koyasan Onsen is a 15-minute walk from Daimon Gate and a 5-minute walk from Kongobu-ji Temple. Namba Station is 2.5 hours away by train.
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