From Nijo Castle to Ginkakuji Temple (silver pavilion)


1. Overview

How to get to Ginkakuji Temple (silver pavilion) from Nijo Castle ?

Visitors Question

You can go  〈1〉 by Walk + Kyoto City Bus No.204   〈2〉 by Subway + Kyoto City Bus No.32 or No.17. 

Locals Answer

The recommended ways to Ginkakuji Temple from Nijo Castle is (1) by Walk + Bus, (2) by Subway + Bus.

There are no direct train or bus services available between them.

The map below is the overview of the routes, stops, time and fare.

Actually, there is no direct bus service available from the nearest bus stop (Nijojo-mae) to Ginkakuji Temple.

But, if you just walk to the next bus stop (one stop north), Horikawa-MarutamachiKyoto City Bus  No.204  take you to Ginkakuji Temple directly.
(Of course, if you are bus one-day pass holder, you can go to the next stop by bus from Nijojo-mae, too, but unfortunately, this bus one-day pass is discontinued at the end of September 2023.)

On the other hand, the nearest station is also nemed Nijojo-mae, operated Kyoto City Subway (Tozai line), which is also convenient.

By taking this subway, you can transfer for Kyoto City Bus  No.32  or  No.17   at Kyoto Shiyakushomae (City Hall) station.

Bus fare is ¥230 and Subway fare is ¥220 for the sections per ride.

These 2 routes have pros and cons.
So, please choose your way, comparing specific examples of times and fares below.

« Examples »

Actually, how long & how much does it take from Nijo Castle to Ginkakuji Temple after all ?

 By only bus , it takes at least 45 to 50 minutes including walking & wating time (¥230).
Firstly, you need 8 minutes’ walk to Horikawa-Marutamachi bus stop.
Bus  No. 204  are
 operated almost every 15 minutes. (Note : not so many bus services)
From the arrival Ginkakuji-michi bus stop, it takes about 8 minutes’ walk.

 By Subway & Bus , it takes in total about 47 minutes including walking & transfer time. (¥450).
Subway Nijojo-mae station is beside the Castle (2 minutes’ walk)
Please transfer for Kyoto City Bus at subway Kyoto Shiyakushomae (city hall) station, (3 miutes to Kyoto Shiyakushomae (city hall) bus stop).
Subway are operated a lot. Bus  No. 17  are operated every 15 minutes No. 32  are every 20 to 30 minutes.

From the arrival Ginkakuji-mae bus stop to Ginkakuji Temple, it takes about 5 minutes’ walk (for  No.32  )
On the other hand, from Ginkakuji-michi bus stop, it takes about 8 minutes’ walk. (for  No.17  ).
If you have Subway & Bus Pass, this route is recommened.

Please note that those buses are likeiy to take more time on peak season because of traffic jam.

The map below shows the ways to the station or bus stop from Nijo Castle for Ginkakuji Temple.

  Subway Nijojo-mae station is just beside the castle (2 minutes’ walk).

  ♦ Kyoto City Bus Horikawa-Marutamachi bus stop is a bit away from the castle (8 minutes’ walk).


2. By Walk + Kyoto City Bus No.204 for Ginkakuji Temple

From Nijo Castle to Ginkakuji Temple (silver pavilion) by Kyoto City Bus  No.204 , it takes at least 45 to 50 minutes including walking and average waiting time. 

Bus  No.204  for Ginkakuji Temple departs from Horikawa-Marutamachi bus stop C.

This bus doesn’t come to the nearest bus stop (Nijojo-mae), so you need about 8 minutes’ walk to Horikawa-Marutamachi bus stop from Nijo Castle.

Horikawa-Marutamachi bus stop is located about o.37 ml / 0.6 km north from the gate of Nijo Castle. (please refer to the location map above)

The followings are the details.

1. The Way to Horikawa-Marutamachi Bus Stop from Nijo Castle

After getting out of the gate of Nijo Castlewalk straight to the left direction on the Horikawa Street along the Castle.

This is the sidewalk along the stone wall of Nijo Castle.

After passing the Castle, go across the first big intersection, and keep walking straight along the Horikawa street.

In 2 minutes from the first intersction, you come to next big intersection, named Horikawa-Marutamachi, meaning Horikawa St. and Marutamachi St. cross.

Please cross the crosswalk, and turn left, then you can see the Horikawa-Marutamachi bus stop C ahead.

2. Take Kyoto City Bus No.204

At Horikawa-Marutamachi bus stop C, take Kyoto City Bus  No.204 .

Buses are operated almost every 15 minutes in the daytime.

3. Get off at Ginkakuji-michi bus stop, and Head for the intersection ahead

In at least 21 minutes’ ride, buses arrive at Ginkakuji-michi bus stop.

After getting off, walk forward direction, and head for the intersection ahead.
(The access map available below)


4. Head for & Walk on the path along a stream.

At the intersection, turn right, cross the crosswalk, and walk on the sidewalk along a stream.

Please keep walking on the path along the stream.

5. Cross the Bridge, and Follow the Street.

In 4 minutes, you come to the small bridge crossing the stream. Then cross the bridge, and go up the slightly uphill street in front of you.

From that bridge, the path along the stream is called “Philosopher’s Walk” or “the Path of Philosophy”. (“Tetsugaku-no-michi” in Japanese)
You can also visit Eikando Temple or Nanzenji Temple through the walk after visiting Ginkakuji Temple (1,2 mile, 2 km, about 25 minutes’ walk).

Keep walking the uphill street.

6. Finally, the Gate of Ginkakuji Temple !

In 3 minutes from the small bridge where the Philosopher’s Walk starts, you finally come to the gate of Ginkakuji Temple.

3. By Subway + Kyoto City Bus No.100 for Ginkakuji Temple

Kyoto City Subway Nijojo-mae station is located just beside the Nijo Castle.

When you get out of the main gate of the castle, please turn right and cross the crosswalk, then subway station entrance (Exit 1) is on your right. It takes 2 minute from the main gate. (please refer to the map in the previous section)

For Ginkakuji Temple, you need to transfer for Kyoto City Bus  No.32  or  No.17  at Subway Kyoto Shiyakushomae (city hall) station.

The followings are the details.

1. Take any Subway Trains at Track No.2.

For Ginkakuji Temple, take any subway trains at track No.2 bound for Rokujizo or Biwako Hama-Otsu station.

The trains are operated a lot, more than 10 times per hour.

2. Get off at Subway Kyoto Shiyakushomae Station, and Transfer.

In about 4 minutes, trains arrive at Kyoto Shiyakushomae (city hall) station, the 2nd stop from Nijojo-mae station.

After getting out of the ticket gate, turn left, and head for Exit 16.

Soon, you will come to a square, and the Exit 16 is on the far right side of the square. (the information board next to it)

There are few exit signs, so it may be difficult to confirm the exit 16, but it is indicated on the right side of the Exit!

After going up the Exit 16, walk along the street to the left.

In about 2 minutes’ walk, you will see Kyoto Shiyakushomae bus stop E ahead.

3. Take Kyoto City Bus No.32 or 17 at Kyoto Shiyakushomae bus stop E.

From the Kyoto Shiyakushomae bus stop E, take Bus  No.32  or  No.17 .

 No.32  take you to the nearest bus stop named Ginkakuji-mae, but operated not so many times, every 20 minutes on weekdays and every 30 minutes on weekends & holidays. On the other hand,  No.17  take you to the second nearest Ginkakuji-michi bus stop, and operated every 15 minutes in the daytime everyday. So, please take any eraly buses.

4. Get off at bus stops near Ginkakuji Temple

In about 20 minutes’ ride, the buses arrive at bus stops near Ginkakuji temple.

If you take bus  No.32 , please get off at Ginkakuji-mae bus stop.

After getting off, walk straight to backwatd direction.

If bus  No.17 , please get off at Ginkakuji-michi bus stop, where Bus  No.204 , explained in previous section, also arrives. (To be precise, the location of the bus stop is different, but the name of the stop is the same.)

After getting off, walk to the forward direction, head for the intersection ahead, and walk on the path along a stream.
(The access map available below)


From there, the way to Ginkakuji Temple is the same as explained in the previous section.


4. Ginkakuji Temple Information 

Opening Hours :

8:30 a.m. – 5:00 p.m. (Mar. 1 – Nov. 30)
9:00 a.m. – 4:30 p.m. (Dec. 1 – Feb. 28)
∗need to enter at least 30 minutes before the closing time

Admission Fee  :

¥500 (adult) / ¥300 (6 – 15 yars old)

Best time to visit  :

at anytime you want to visit