When visiting our campuses you may have a bit of time to explore the surrounding area. Although there are hundreds of interesting places to visit in Kyoto, those easiest to access from our campuses are as follows:
Kinkakuji – The “Golden Pavilion” is one of the most popular sites in Kyoto and one of the city’s 17 World Cultural Heritage sites.
Getting there: 5 min. by taxi or 15-20min. walk. To get there on foot, turn right at the exit of the main gate of Ritsumeikan (near the bus loop), and follow the main road for approximately 1km, the entrance to Kinkakuji will be on the left side.
Ryoanji – This UNESCO world heritage site was built in 1450 by Hosokawa Katsumoto, deputy to the Ashikaaga shogun. Although the land was originally used as an estate for a powerful family of regents, the grounds were later converted into a Zen sect temple. Ryoanji is home to one of Japan’s most famous rock gardens.
Getting there: At the exit of the main gate of Ritsumeikan (near the bus loop), turn left and walk approximately 500meters, the entrance to Ryoanji will be on your right side.
Nijo Castle – Built in 1601 during the Tokugawa era, Nijo Castle was used as a residence for Tokugawa Shoguns. After being donated to Kyoto City, the castle grounds were opened to the public in 1940.
Getting there: Take the subway from Nijo Station to Nijojo-mae. The castle is directly next to the station. By foot, the castle can be reached from Suzaku by walking approx. 150m North and turning East on Oshikoji Street (wide East-West Street located approx. 100m North of Nijo Station)
Biwako Kusatsu Campus
Ishiyama Temple – This temple was constructed in the 8th century and made famous as the place where Murasaki Shikibu began writing “The Tale of Genji,” one of Japan’s most important and well-known pieces of literature. The large temple grounds are most impressive in the fall season when they become saturated with leaves of all shades of red, orange, and yellow.
Getting there: Take the JR Tokkaido line train to Ishiyama Station. From there, ride for 10 minutes on a bus displaying one of the following destinations: 「石山団地」, 「新浜」, 「大石」, 「南郷二丁目東」
Sojiji Temple – Founded in the 9th century by Yamakage Fujiwara (824-888), a nobleman in the Heian period. The temple is said to have been founded by Yamakage as his family’s guardian temple and it is enshrined with a statute of multi-armed deity. Every year, the Ceremony of Hocho (knife) is held on April 18th, attracting many visitors. The temple has a knife mound where used knives dedicated to the temple by restaurants and families are buried.
Getting there: Take Hankyu Kyoto Line to Sojiji Station. It is approximately 5 minutes by foot.