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The Philosopher's Walk In Kyoto - Enjoy It Every Season!

The Philosopher's Walk In Kyoto - Enjoy It Every Season!

Kyoto 2017.06.20 Bookmark

The Philosopher's Walk is a beautiful 2-kilometer walking path found in Kyoto. It's known for its sakura and autumn leaves, as well as for the many cats that live in the area.

Translated by Takuya Erik Watanabe

Written by Mayu

Philosopher's Walk


The Philosopher's Walk (Tetsugaku no michi) is a path found in Kyoto. It continues for about 2 kilometers up to Gingakuji Temple along the Lake Biwa Canal (Biwakososui), which was created to let water flow from Lake Biwa to the city.

Along the path are approximately 500 sakura trees, and the area is well-known for its magnificent sakura cherry blossom views in the spring. Many cats live in the area, making it popular among cat-lovers as well.


The Philosopher's Walk was created in 1890 when the Lake Biwa Canal was completed. The path was officially named the Philosopher's Walk in 1972 after prominent philosopher Kitaro Nishida, as he would often take walks along the path. Kitaro Nishida lived in Kyoto during the Meiji and Showa periods.

Basic Information on the Philosopher's Walk


The Philosopher's Walk is open to visitors 24/7. There are no closed days or admission fees.


From Kyoto Station, you can ride the Kyoto City Bus 100 (for Kiyomizudera Temple and Gingakuji Temple) and alight at Gingakujimae. The ride is 40 minutes and will cost 230 yen.

For how to reach Kyoto from Tokyo or Osaka, check out Kyoto Complete Guide: Travel Tips, Sightseeing, Festivals and More!

Seasonal Events

Sakura: Early April


In early April, the Philosopher's Walk comes to life with sakura cherry blossoms in full bloom. The sakura trees on both sides of the canal practically create cherry blossom tunnel. It's a great spot to see cherry blossoms, highly recommended even by the locals.

Autumn Leaves: Mid-November to Early December


The path is also colored in red by autumn leaves in the fall. The view of the bright red leaves reflecting in the water is a very popular attraction.

Surrounding Attractions


You will find many famous temples around the Philosopher's Walk, such as Gingakuji, Nanzenji, and Eikando. Many people visit all of these on foot.
For more on the best sightseeing spots in Kyoto, read our Kyoto Complete Guide: Travel Tips, Sightseeing, Festivals and More!

The information presented in this article is based on the time it was written. Note that there may be changes in the merchandise, services, and prices that have occurred after this article was published. Please contact the facility or facilities in this article directly before visiting.

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