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Kyoto Entrance Fees 2019/3/26 23:17
Hi All,

After traveling around Japan a reasonable amount, the one thing which always has amazed me is the disparity in the cost between attractions in Kyoto and those in the rest of the country. To put it simply - Kyoto's entrance fees appear to be more expensive than the rest of the country.

One example is seen in the cost of entry to temples in Kyoto compared to the rest of the country. Minor temples are often 2-300 yen for entry (Kamakura), but 500 yen seems to be the starting price in Kyoto.

This is not a complaint - but I'm trying to work out why entrance fees in Kyoto tend to be more expensive compared to the rest of the country. Note that this question is coming from my own ignorance - but I do have two potential reasons which I'm expecting others to have more knowledge than me in this regard

(1) They charge more because they can and people will visit no matter the cost
(2) Prices are increased to reduce numbers of people visiting so that the attraction is not over-populated with too many tourists. (I saw this a lot when I used to live in China)

This post was written in response to putting together a 5 day list of sites to visit of less seen locations I have not visited yet - which is basically stuff on the periphery of the city....
by mfedley  

Re: Kyoto Entrance Fees 2019/3/27 08:26
(3) The temple are over run with tourists and the maintence costs become higher.

Personal opinion is that I think it is 1 + 2 + 3.

Kyoto temples are a must do, hence I think people will pay whether they be a few yen higher than normal.

I also find the temples and shrine grounds are somewhat bigger in Kyoto compared to elsewhere, hence may require more yen for maintenance?

As a side note in regards to Kamakura, they have so many temples in the one area, I think there is too much supply/options and they need to keep entry fees low. Out of the 9-10 temples, most people would only visit 3-4 in a day, so if one happens to charge a lot more than the others, they ain't gonna get visitors.
by hakata14 (guest) rate this post as useful

Re: Kyoto Entrance Fees 2019/3/30 01:23
I think your comment on (3) is also right on. Surprised by the lack of comments though - but it will be interesting to see how busy Kyoto is after not visiting for 6 years....
by mfedley rate this post as useful

Re: Kyoto Entrance Fees 2019/3/30 03:44
For the exception of Arashiyama, which I visited at 6:00am on my way from Osaka to Kanazawa in 2015, I've skipped Kyoto since 2013. So that's 8 trips since 2013 that I really haven't seen anything in Kyoto. I went to Fushimi Inari at 6:00am and it was deserted, except for a few Spanish tourists (wearing my rival Barcelona t-shirts; I wore a Real Madrid one and the meeting was funny). The rest of my visit was crowded with obnoxious tourists who had no sense of decorum. I have a feeling I won't return to Kyoto anytime soon unless something drastic changes the minds of most tourists. I can deal with crowds, but not Kyoto crowds.

As to why the fees are higher there than average? I feel it's a conglomeration of all possible reasons; they can (because people will still go), maintenance fees (for renovations [i.e. Kiyomizudera]), as a possible (however unlikely) deterrent for crowd control, possible insurance against vandalism (in partnership with maintenance fees), etc. Kyoto is a tourist destination, plain and simple and I'm sure that is the most important factor as to the reason entry fees are higher there than anywhere, for the exception of places such as Tokyo Skytree, Meiji Mura, etc. Whenever I went to the Peace Memorial Museum in Hiroshima, the entry fee was a measly 50 yen when I first went and then increased to 200, but I always dropped a 500 yen coin and told them the rest was a donation. I didn't mind.
by John B digs Japan rate this post as useful

Re: Kyoto Entrance Fees 2019/3/30 09:57
(4) because they are the historically most important temples in the country, located in the former capital city. I think it is just natural that the price increases with historical relevance.

Apart from that, I feel that 500 yen is still rather cheap when compared to the admission fees in North America and Europe. Some recent personal observations: in Vancouver you pay around 4000 yen to see a suspension bridge, and on Lake Louise you can rent a rowing boat for 10,000 yen per hour.
by Uji rate this post as useful

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