Mar. 11, 2023 UPDATE

Easy Kyoto Station itinerary for families with kids

Kyoto Station is a place almost everyone goes to when in Kyoto, but there are many family friendly places around it that are extremely easy to get to.
Kyoto Railway Museum and Kyoto Aquarium

Kyoto Station is an easy place for families to go to, and sometimes you just don’t want to go any further. Luckily, there are many great family friendly places around the station, so there are things to do for the whole day.

Today on our menu we have the Railway Museum, Kyoto Aquarium, Kyoto Tower, and some great restaurants. So, it is time to start our day at Kyoto Station:

9:00 a.m. Kyoto Station

ogawa coffee

First, if you haven’t had your breakfast yet, there is a nice café called Ogawa really close to the subway station one floor below the JR Station main entrance. They have a breakfast set for 550 yen for those who haven’t had time to have breakfast yet. Though this being Kyoto Station, there are of course many other choices for breakfast too. 

kyoto station

 For those of you who have had breakfast already, there is actually a lot to see at the station building too. 

Address Higashishiokoji Kamadono-cho, Shimogyo-ku, Kyoto
Open Hours Central gate ticket office: 5:30 a.m. to 11:00 p.m.

10:00 p.m. Time to go to Kyoto Railway Museum (or Aquarium)!

 Railway Museum

There are two especially great places close to Kyoto Station, the Railway Museum, and the Aquarium. It may be a bit tiring to go to both of them in a day, but at least go to one of them. 

 Umekoji Park

You go to both of them through the Umekoji Park, a nice place for a walk in the middle of Kyoto. 

 statues of trains

At the park and even on your way to it, you can see many statues of trains and weirder things like jellyfish which kindly have signs on them pointing to the Railway Museum and the aquarium. Unfortunately, these signs only have the names in Japanese...

 The Railway Museum

The Railway Museum is a fun place for the whole family; you get to see all kinds of trains from steam locomotives all the way to the Shinkansen bullet trains. 

 sky terrace

One of the best parts of the museum is this sky terrace, from where you can see the trains coming to and heading out from Kyoto Station. There are few other places where you get to see the bullet trains as well as from here. 

Address Kankijicho, Shimogyo-ku, Kyoto
Open Hours 10am - 5:30pm(No admission after 5:00 p.m.)

 it’s time to see some marine life!

Now, it’s time to see some marine life! 

 huge building

Kyoto Aquarium is a huge building that is easy to recognize: it looks so modern you almost think you were in Tokyo. 

 nice and cool

The aquarium is an especially great place to visit in summer when it is almost unbearably hot in Kyoto; inside it will be nice and cool. 

Deciding between these two places may not be easy, but both of them offer a great chance for you to enjoy another side of Kyoto. 

1:00 p.m. Time for lunch! 

 Time for lunch!

There is an interesting café right next to the aquarium which is actually inside a Kyoto City Tram tramcar. These tramcars were in use until 1978. They only offer light foods like simple hotdogs and popcorn, but the café is inside a tramcar, so you can’t complain too much. 

There is also a restaurant and a café closer to the Railway Museum offering some heavier fare, and there are of course cafes inside the museum and the aquarium so you shouldn’t go hungry. 

Temple visit or Kyoto Tower? 

Next, it is time to choose between two famous sightseeing spots in Kyoto: To-ji Temple and the Kyoto Tower

 To-ji Temple

Let’s start with To-ji Temple. This temple is one of the two guardian temples of Kyoto, and the only one remaining to this day. The temple is especially known for its beautiful Five-Storied Pagoda. 

This temple is on the south side of Kyoto Station, and you have to walk around 15 to 20 minutes to get to it, but for those who want to see at least one temple a day, this temple is a great choice. 

Address 1, Kujocho, Minami-ku Kyoto-shi, Kyoto, 601-8473
Open Hours March 20th - April 17th : 5am - 5pm April 18th - September 19th : 5am - 6pm September 20th - March 19th : 5am - 4:30pm

 Kyoto Tower

Next, we have the Kyoto Tower, an almost post-modern looking tower right in front of Kyoto Station. For this reason, the tower is, of course, extremely easy to find. 

 From the tower

From the tower, you get to see all of Kyoto, from Kiyomizu Temple and Sanjusangendo to the famous Gozan-no-Okuribi mountains with the Chinese characters on them. 

Address 721-1, Higashishiokojicho, Shimogyo-ku Kyoto-shi, Kyoto, 600-8216
Open Hours 9am - 9:20pm (must enter by 9:00pm) ※The open hours was changed from 2020 August 1th. 【Observation Deck】  11am~7pm(must enter by 6:30pm)

5:30 Dinner in Japanese style

 Kyoto cuisine

When in Kyoto, you, of course, have to eat some fine Kyoto cuisine. And there is no better place in Kyoto for this than Kyoto Wakuden. 

 Kyoto Wakuden

What is special about Kyoto Wakuden is not only that their dishes look and taste great but also that this kaiseki restaurant is family friendly, so you can go taste kaiseki cuisine even when traveling with children. This is a pretty popular place, so it is recommended you make a reservation, especially if you are going on the weekend. 


But of course, kaiseki is not cheap. But worry not, there are many great ramen places also in Kyoto Station, and among them our recommendation would have to be Todai , which offers tonkotsu-style bork-bones broth noodles with a distinct sukiyaki sweetness to them. 



At Todai, not only is their ramen especially good, but you also get raw eggs for free! You can make your soup as eggy as you want. 

This wraps up our day at Kyoto Station, but of course, this is only the beginning, and you will probably want to go to many other places in Kyoto too. So, click the links on the right for some more articles about the great things you can do in Kyoto! 

Sampo[ Sharing Kyoto Staff ]
There is so much to do by Kyoto Station that you are not going to be bored. Though there are going to be many people at the station, it is usually not too crowded once you get to the Umekoji Park.
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