Local buses in Kyoto : Kyoto City Bus


1. Operation Area / Hours

The map above is the service area operated by Kyoto City Bus and others.

In Kyoto, there are mainly 4 bus companies such as Kyoto Bus, Keihan Bus and JR Bus in addition to Kyoto City Bus.

Kyoto City Bus covers all over the Kyoto city except for the east area of Kyoto (Yamashina) and the upper north area (Kurama, Kibune and Ohara) compared with others.

The body color of Kyoto City Bus is usually green.

On the other hand,  Kyoto Bus is brown, Keihan Bus is red and JR Bus is blue.

With that colors, it is easy to tell those 4 different buses.

The operating hours and the number of bus services are depend on routes.

But operating hours is mostly from 6 a.m. to 10 p.m.,

and bus services are available basically every 7 – 20 minutes for major attractions.

2. Attractions within the area

2-1 Main Attractions you can visit

By using Kyoto City Bus, you can visit almost all famous spots such as…

Arashiyama, Kinkakuji temple (golden pavilion), Ginkakuji temple (silver pavilion), Nijo castle, Kiyomizudera temple, Gion area / Yasaka jinja shrine, Fushimi-inari shrine and so on.

Kyoto City Bus operates special buses for visitors called Raku Bus. ( Attention ! Currently, these Raku Bus are out of service for an undetermined period of time. )

By Raku Bus, you can visit Kinkakuji temple, Ginkakuji temple, Nijo castle, Kiyomizudera temple, Gion area and other famous spots easily.

On the other hand, the areas that Kyoto City Bus does not cover are…

Kurama, Kibune, Ohara (in the upper north of Kyoto) and Yamashina (in the east of Kyoto).

Kurama, Kibune and Ohara area are covered by Kyoto Bus,

Yamashina area is covered by Keihan Bus.

2-2 From Kyoto Station to the Attractions

How long dose it take from Kyoto station to major attractions by Kyoto City Bus ?

Arashiyama / Togetsu Bridge : at least 44 min
(bus ride  43 min, get off at Arashiyama-koen bus stop, walk 1 min)

Kinkakuji Temple (golden pavilion) : at least 42 –48 min
(bus ride 37 – 43 min, get off at Kinkakuji-michi bus stop, walk 5 min)

Ginkakuji Temple (silver pavilion) : at least 42 min
(bus ride 37 min, get off at Ginkakuji-mae bus stop, walk 5 min)

♦ Nijo Castle : at least 15 –20 min
(bus ride 14 – 19 min, get off at Nijojo-mae bus stop, walk 1 min)

Heianjingu Shrine / Okazaki Park area : at least 29 – 35 min
(bus ride 26 – 32 min, get off at Okazakikoen Bijutsukan Heianjingu-mae bus stop, walk 3 min)

Gion area / Yasakajinja Shrine : at least 18 – 22 min
(bus ride 17 – 21 min, get off at Gion bus stop, walk 1 min)

Kiyomizu Temple : at least 21 – 25 min
(bus ride 11 – 15 min, get off at Gojozaka bus stop, walk 10 min)

Fushimi-inari Shrine : at least 23 min
(bus ride 16 min, get off at Inaritaisha-mae bus stop, walk 7 min)

Please note that…

on peak season such as cherry blossoms (from late March to early April) or autumun leaves (November), it takes more time to get to each attractions because of heavy traffic jam.


3. Fares & Passes

3-1 Fares a ride & Flat Fare Zone

The bus fares depend on areas whether your destinations are within Flat Fare Zone or not.

Flat Fare Zone means that no matter where you get off,
the fare is ¥230 for an adult / ¥120 for a child (6 – 11 yares old) per ride within the zone.

Extra fare is needed if you ride beyond the zone.

In fact, most of attractions accessible by Kyoto City Bus are within the Flat Fare Zone.

So if your destination is typically famed place in Kyoto, the fare must be ¥230 per ride.

Please check the map below that shows Flat Fare Zone with attractions.

The folowings are the examples of the fare for main sections.

«The sections within the flat fare (¥230 / ¥120)»

Kyoto Station 
Arashiyama, Kamigamojinja shrineFushimi-inari shrine and most of famous spots

From Mar. 2021, Takao area (Jingoji temple, Kozanji temple) come to be within flat fare zone.

«The sections beyond flat fare»

Kyoto Station 
⇔ Hankyu railway Katsura Station (¥240 / ¥120)

3-2 Type of Passes you can use

Any IC Cards including Kansai One Pass are accepted.

Subway & Bus One-Day Pass and Kansai Thru Pass are available for all routes operated by Kyoto City Bus.

Bus One-Day Pass is available only for buses within Flat fare zone.
But, unfortunately, this Bus One-day Pass is discontinued at the end of September 2023!

On the other hand, JR Pass cannot be used for Kyoto City Bus.