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See the main sights of both Kyoto and Nara in one day! This day trip from Osaka takes you on a morning tour of Nijo Castle, Kinkaku-ji Temple (Golden Pavilion), Kyoto Imperial Palace and Kitano Tenman-gu Shrine. After a Japanese lunch, visit landmarks in nearby Nara, home to Kasuga Shrine and the impressive Great Buddha of Todai-ji Temple. Upon hotel pickup, your guide will accompany you by motor coach, JR Rail and Kintetsu Rail, and inform you about the cultural treasures in each historical capital.
- Instant Confirmation
- Buffet lunch included
- Day trip (destination A to B)
- Comprehensive tour by bus/coach
- All entrance fees included
- Informative, friendly and professional guide
Meet your guide upon hotel pickup and head to JR Osaka Station. Board the JR Special Rapid Service or Rapid Service (non-reserved seating) to Kyoto, Japan's former capital and the emperor's residence from 794 until 1868. Now the country's seventh largest city, modern Kyoto remains steeped in traditional culture. Your morning tour of the city’s main highlights includes approximately 45 minutes at each site.
Start at Nijo Castle, a former residence of the Tokugawa Shogun. Completed in 1626, Nijo Castle is noted for the contrast of its solemn appearance and gorgeous interiors. (Note: When Nijo Castle is closed you’ll visit Ryoan-ji Temple instead.)
After touring the castle, head to nearby Kinkaku-ji Temple, Kyoto's most popular Zen Buddhist temple. Home to perhaps the world's most authentic and exquisite Japanese garden, the temple features the celebrated Golden Pavilion whose wooden structure is completely covered in gold leaf.
Next, visit Kyoto Imperial Palace, which clearly demonstrates the Japanese taste for purity, simplicity and tranquility. With your guide you’ll gain exclusive access to the former residence of the Emperor of Japan before the capital moved to Tokyo. When the Kyoto Imperial Palace is closed, the tour will visit Kitano Shrine (Kitano Tenman-gu) instead. This famous shrine, known as the god of study, has been designated a national treasure and is particularly worth seeing for its Japanese plum blossoms and colored leaves.
Enjoy a Japanese set meal for lunch (vegetarian option available) before you’re off to Nara, located in the Kinai Plain less than one hour from Kyoto. Due to its past as the first permanent capital of Japan, established in the year 710 at Heijo, the city now known as Nara remains full of iconic sites.
See Todai-ji Temple, one of Japan's most famous and historically significant temples, constructed in the 8th century. In its huge precincts are various national treasures of Japan. Step foot in the Daibutsuden (Great Buddha Hall), one of the world's largest wooden buildings, before a stop at Kasuga Shrine. This most famous and beautiful Shinto shrine features some 3,000 antique stone and bronze lanterns.
Before your day trip ends, your guide will take you to Nara Nagomikan, Nara’s biggest souvenir shop where you’ll have the opportunity to browse for about 20 minutes. Here, you’ll find a variety of food products, sweets, and goods exclusive to Nara. Afterward, head to Kintetsu-Nara Station for the rail ride back to Osaka-Namba Station on the Kintetsu line (non-reserved seat) with your guide. Upon arrival back in Osaka, you'll make your own way back to your hotel.
Kyoto and Nara Day Tour including Golden Pavilion and Todaiji Temple from Osaka
Select a month to view a calendar of availability and departure details.
Tour departs from selected Osaka hotels
- 7:30am from Osaka Hotel Granvia Osaka
Hotel pickups commence prior to this time, you must contact the local service provider to verify your exact pickup time.
Tour concludes upon arrival at Kintetsu Namba Station (in Osaka) at approximately 6:30pm to 7:30pm
Click the link below to check pricing & availability on your preferred travel date. Our pricing is constantly updated to ensure you always receive the lowest price possible.
Todai-ji Temple and Cherry Blossom
- Hotel pickup (from selected Osaka hotels only)
- Transportation by motorcoach, JR Rail and Kintetsu Rail
- Admission Fees
- Professional English-speaking guide
- Entrance to the Treasures Hall
- Entrance to the Manyo Botanical Gardens at Kasuga Shrine
- Hotel drop off
- Confirmation will be received at time of booking, unless booked within 7 days of travel. In this case confirmation will be received within 48 hours, subject to availability
- On Saturdays, Sundays, and National Holidays, Kyoto Imperial Palace is closed.
- Please note that you will be asked to fill in your full name, nationality, gender, and age before entering the Kyoto Imperial Palace (forms will be handed out on the day of the tour).
- Tour itinerary subject to change
- On Tuesdays (Wednesday if Tuesday is a national holiday) in January, July, August, and December, Nijojo Castle is closed. The tour will visit Ryoan-ji Temple instead
- On Jan. 25, May 25 and Aug. 25, Nishi Hongan-ji Temple will be the alternative for Kitano-tenmangu Shrine
- The tour may not visit Nara Nagomikan if it is closed or if traffic conditions make it difficult
- Some parts of pathway on this tour have gravel surface
Terms and Conditions:
If you cancel at least 8 day(s) in advance of the scheduled departure, there is no cancellation fee.
If you cancel between 3 and 7 day(s) in advance of the scheduled departure, there is a 50 percent cancellation fee.
If you cancel within 2 day(s) of the scheduled departure, there is a 100 percent cancellation fee.
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Local Operator Information:
Complete Operator information, including local telephone numbers at your destination, are included on your Confirmation Voucher. Our Product Managers select only the most experienced and reliable operators in each destination, removing the guesswork for you, and ensuring your peace of mind.