Shinkensen at the station

16 of the best day trips from Kyoto

A super fast and efficient public transport system, being geographically compact and with so much diversity makes Japan an ideal country to explore. You don’t need to be constantly moving from one base to another to see new parts of Japan, so much is accessible within a reasonable commute from a central city. We’ve taken these trips from Kyoto but they’re equally suitable if you are based in Osaka, Kobe or Nara. Have fun!

Festivals in Japan are a fabulous way to enjoy a community atmosphere and local culture. Here's all you need to know to plan a visit to the Nagahama Kabuki Festival

Visting the Nagahama Hikiyama Matsuri

A great day trip from Kyoto is to Nagahama and it’s even better if you can time it to be there on the 15th April for the annual Nagahama Hikiyama matsuri (festival).  It’s a float festival where Kabuki theatre is played out by local boys…

Bonbai in Nagahama

Bonbai blooms again in Nagahama

If you love bonsai (the Japanese art of miniature trees) or ume (the beautiful flowering plum trees) then Nagahama bonbai is for you! Held in an historic villa in the friendly town of Nagahama this quick detour on our way to Hikone turned out to be an absolute highlight of the trip.