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    Looking for the best family things to do in Kyoto? The former Japanese capital is famous for its shrines and temples, but there are plenty of places that will interest children too. From hands-on learning facilities and zoos that are ideal for families with young children to factory tours and a whole village set where historical Japanese TV dramas are shot, and even driving routes where you can enjoy Kyoto's fantastic seasonal scenery, Kyoto has something that almost all ages can enjoy. 

    You'll also find some fascinating places and activities for learning about the land and history of Kyoto, too. Join us as we set out on a family trip to some of the city's most magical destinations together with the many fun places in Kyoto to take your kids.

    1

    Yonezawa Kobo

    Join a Japanese pottery class

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    Yonezawa Kobo should be on top of your list if you’re looking for a handmade crafting experience that you can enjoy with your family in Kyoto. It’s set in a quiet neighbourhood with old Kyoto-style townhouses, and pottery-making classes are held here every day. At the one-day pottery making experience, each group gets a private room, so you can take your time and work on making your pottery with care. You can choose to make several small pieces or try to complete a masterpiece. 

    For families with small children, there’s a pottery-making experience with original stamps to use. After rolling out the clay and cutting it into shapes using a paper pattern, you can decorate your plate with these different stamps. There are 10 different colours to choose from. This is a great opportunity to make your own unique plate!

    Poloha: 280-4 Sansukecho, Kamigyo Ward, Kyoto 602-8356, Japan

    Otevřeno: Daily from 10 am to 5 pm

    Telefon: +81 (0)75-467-3935

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    2

    Kyoto Aquarium

    Japan's first large artificial seawater aquarium

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    Kyoto Aquarium was opened in 2012 with the concept of 'Life Connected by Water'. It’s known as Japan’s first large aquarium using artificial seawater in landlocked Kyoto. The highlight of this aquarium is the fur seals, which you can watch swimming in a large tank as if they were flying. 

    In the Penguin Area, you can see penguins in the water on a 1st level and watch them waddling on land on the 2nd level. Dolphin Stadium and the dolphin performance held there every day is another must-see. You can also see about 50 kinds of fish including sharks and rays swimming gracefully in the Sea of Kyoto, the biggest tank at Kyoto Aquarium.

    Poloha: 35-1 Kankijicho, Shimogyo Ward, Kyoto 600-8835, Japan

    Otevřeno: Daily from 10 am to 6 pm

    Telefon: +81 (0)75-354-3130

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    Autor fotografií: Yu-Ching Chu (CC BY 2.0) upraveno

    3

    Kyoto Municipal Science Center For Youth

    Learn about science while having fun

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    Kyoto Municipal Science Center For Youth is a facility where young people can learn about science while having fun. Since opening in 1969, this has been a very popular site, receiving 160,000 visitors annually, mainly families with children from Kyoto. The facility is divided into the exposition area, planetarium and outdoor garden, and a Tyrannosaurus will welcome you at the first exhibition room just after the entrance on the 2nd floor.

    There are 29 exhibits including a dinosaur area with models of restored dinosaur fossils. You’ll also find 32 exhibits focusing on science in the second exhibition room, and children can learn naturally while having fun. And then there’s the planetarium, which is popular not only with children but also with adults. The positions of the moon and planets of that day will be explained live in the general projection programme. The outdoor garden is grassy and has an artificial pond, while the butterfly house features rare butterflies from Okinawa.

    Poloha: 13 Fukakusa Ikenouchicho, Fushimi Ward, Kyoto 612-0882, Japan

    Otevřeno: Daily from 9 am to 5 pm (usually closed on Thursdays)

    Telefon: +81 (0)75-642-1601

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    Autor fotografií: L26 (CC BY-SA 4.0) upraveno

    4

    Coca-Cola Bottles Japan, Kyoto Plant

    Tour the Kyoto facility of the world-famous soda

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    The facilities at Coca-Cola Bottles Japan, Kyoto Plant, which manufactures Georgia Coffee and Kochakaden as well as Coke, are open to visitors. It’s no exaggeration to say that Coca-Cola is the most famous drink in the world. You can enjoy learning about Coca-Cola as you go through 6 areas in the plant. 

    It’s a 90-minute tour that both children and adults can enjoy, and you’ll see old Coca-Cola bottles and watch the history of Coca-Cola in 3D. You’ll also see the manufacturing process of Georgia Coffee at the Kyoto Plant. The tour is held 3 times a day (4 times depending on the season). You'll need to book ahead because the tour is hugely popular.

    Poloha: Shinarami-128 Tai, Kumiyama, Kuse District, Kyoto 613-0036, Japan

    Otevřeno: Tours: Tuesday–Sunday at 10 am, 12.30 pm, 2.30 pm and 4.30 pm (closed on 1st Monday of the month)

    Telefon: +81 (0)77-443-5522

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    Autor fotografií: Toshiyuki IMAI (CC BY-SA 2.0) upraveno

    5

    Kyoto City Zoo

    One of Japan's oldest zoos

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    Kyoto City Zoo, opened in 1903, is the second oldest zoo in Japan. The zoo is divided into 6 zones such as Fierce Animal World with lions and jaguars, Forest of Elephants where you can see Asian elephants, and Gorilla House where western gorillas live. You can pet animals such as tamed livestock at Otogi no Kuni while deepening your knowledge of animals and learning about the importance of life. 

    Although Kyoto City Zoo is smaller than other big zoos, most visitors enjoy the 'close encounters' with the animals and being able to see fierce animals up close. There’s also a library café that anyone can use without entering the zoo itself. Kyoto City Zoo is ideal for relaxing and enjoying animals as a family.

    Poloha: Inside Okazaki Park, Okazaki Hoshojicho, Sakyo Ward, Kyoto 606-8333, Japan

    Otevřeno: March–November: Tuesday–Sunday from 9 am to 5 pm. December–February: Tuesday–Sunday from 9 am to 4.30 pm (closed on Mondays)

    Telefon: +81 (0)75-771-0210

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    Autor fotografií: Kamigata0 (CC BY-SA 4.0) upraveno

    6

    Kyoto Railway Museum

    Rich on locomotive history

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    Kyoto Railway Museum is a very popular facility for railway enthusiasts and families with children. The facility opened in 2016 and became highly popular for its rich contents. Umekoji Steam Locomotive Museum, which was originally located here, was renovated with new exhibits, bringing together a total of 53 electric and steam trains. The museum has been transformed now into a totally new railway museum that is one of the largest in Japan. 

    You can take your time and learn more about railways from the old trains that were actually used or the exhibition of the history of railways. You can have fun all day with the simulated experience of driving a real train with a driving simulator or riding a real C612 steam train. There’s also an old car originally used as a dining car where you can enjoy boxed lunches.

    Poloha: Kankijicho, Shimogyo Ward, Kyoto 600-8835, Japan

    Otevřeno: Thursday–Tuesday from 10 am to 5.30 pm (closed on Wednesdays)

    Telefon: +81 (0)75-323-7334

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    Autor fotografií: Cheng-en Cheng (CC BY-SA 2.0) upraveno

    7

    Toei Kyoto Studio Park

    Journey back in time to Edo Japan

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    Toei Kyoto Studio Park is a theme park where you can feel as if you were lost in Japan’s Edo period. The open set of 53,000 square metres recreates the town of Edo with kimono wholesalers, teashops, and Nihombashi. This set is actually used for shooting TV programs and films, so if you’re lucky you might catch some of the action. 

    There are plenty of shows to enjoy, including anime character and superhero shows, along with interactive attractions like the Ninja Mystery House and 3D Maze. And if you need a break, you can stop by at restaurants that have the appearance of actual Edo period establishments. Ninja art classes, animal petting and other events are held regularly, so it's a good idea to check the event schedule before visiting the park with your family.

    Poloha: 10 Uzumasa Higashihachiokacho, Ukyo Ward, Kyoto 616-8161, Japan

    Otevřeno: Hours vary by season

    Telefon: +81 (0)75-864-7716

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    Autor fotografií: Ryosuke Yagi (CC BY 2.0) upraveno

    8

    Diorama Kyoto JAPAN

    A massive world of miniature railroads

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    Diorama Kyoto JAPAN is one of the largest railroad dioramas in Japan, covering a total area of 285.15 square metres and with a track length of 2.7 km. Kyoto’s historical sites and scenery including Kiyomizudera Temple and Kyoto Tower are elaborately created. The diorama is a marvel to look at, but you can also operate model trains that run in the diorama from a control board that resembles a real train driver’s seat. 

    You don’t have to be a railway geek to be fascinated by the stories that the diorama tells. The diorama of Kyoto turns into night in a popular astronomy show held every 30 minutes. Dazzling constellations in the night sky and the illuminated railroad tracks and streets of Kyoto are a must-see.

    Poloha: Sagatenryuji Kurumamichicho, Ukyo Ward, Kyoto 616-8373, Japan

    Otevřeno: Thursday–Tuesday from 9 am to 5.30 pm (closed on Wednesdays)

    Telefon: +81 (0)75-882-7432

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    Autor fotografií: 吉爾 (CC BY-SA 2.0) upraveno

    9

    Arashiyama Takao Parkway

    Take a scenic drive in Kyoto

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    Arashiyama Takao Parkway is a 10.7-km-long toll road that connects Arashiyama and Takao in Kyoto. There are various facilities along the Parkway. Hozukyo Gorge Observatory is said to have the best view of the road, as you can see the clear stream of Hozu River and the surrounding mountains. You can enjoy canola flowers and cosmos blooming in the Flower Park, and you can ride a cycle monorail at Kankudai Amusement Park.

    There’s also a covered barbecue facility where you can eat and drink outdoors even in bad weather. Plus, you can fish trout in the Arashiyama Fishing Area. Arashiyama Takao Parkway makes for a great family trip as you can enjoy the views from the car as well as the various facilities en route.

    Poloha: Ukyo Ward, Kyoto, Japan

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    Autor fotografií: Mti (CC BY-SA 4.0) upraveno

    10

    Arashiyama Monkey Park Iwatayama

    Meet macaques and take in the view

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    Arashiyama Monkey Park Iwatayama is a monkey mountain where you can interact with wild monkeys. There are about 120 Japanese macaque monkeys living in this wild environment. It takes about 20 minutes on foot from the entrance of Arashiyama Monkey Park Iwatayama to the hut where the monkeys gather. There are some slightly hard sections, but you’re free to take a break at resting places and walk at your own pace. 

    Food for the monkeys is sold at the rest hut at the top of the mountain, and you can feed them from the inside the hut with wire net walls. There’s also an observatory at the top of the mountain, from which you can overlook the city of Kyoto at a height of 160 metres. On a sunny day, you may even be able to see Kyoto Tower. This is a great way to spend a relaxed day in a natural park.

    Poloha: 8 Arashiyama Genrokuzancho, Nishikyo Ward, Kyoto 616-0007, Japan

    Otevřeno: Hours vary by season

    Telefon: +81 (0)75-872-0950

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    Autor fotografií: Andrea Schaffer (CC BY 2.0) upraveno

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