Train Trip in Kansai: Hieizan A Trip of the Rich Nature and Japanese History of Enryakuji on Mount Hiei

Enjoy the charms of ancient Kyoto and Hieizan, which are also UNESCO World Heritage sites, on a single tour.

Enryakuji Temple on Mount Hiei is known as the "birthplace of Buddhism in Japan" and is the headquarters of the Tendai sect of Mahayana Buddhism, having been established by Saicho over 1,200 years ago. Although a visit to Enryakuji Temple is its main attraction, this route is also filled with the charms of Fushimi and Uji in Kyoto through sake tasting and a tea ceremony experience.

(map) Kyoto, Shiga Kyoto Shiga

Keihan Railway

The Kyoto-Osaka Sightseeing Pass can only be purchased by tourists from abroad and is very useful for travel and sightseeing in Osaka and Kyoto.

Taihoan Uji Municipal Tearoom

This authentic tearoom was constructed with the aim of promoting Uji-cha (high-quality tea cultivated in Uji, Kyoto) and spreading tea ceremony culture. Tea ceremony procedures are performed with seasonal sweets accompanying Uji-cha served here in its birthplace. Even beginners can feel at ease enjoying this tea ceremony experience.

Obakusan Manpuku-ji Temple

This is the head temple of the Zen temple complex constructed as a part of the Obaku school of Zen Buddhism in 1661 by a priest known as Ingen, who came from China. The temple buildings have the features of temples from late Ming Dynasty China, making them unusual and unlike any other temples in Japan.

Fushimi Yume Hyakushu Cafe

Fushimi Yume Hyakushu Cafe is a paradise for sake-lovers, bringing together the drinks from 17 sake breweries located in Fushimi. As well as a tasting menu offering samples of five varieties, there are also sake sweets and coffee made with the water used in sake production, so even if you are not a fan of sake on its own, there is plenty to enjoy here.


GOOD NATURE STATION is a complex of restaurants, shops and hotels located in Kawaramachi, Kyoto. Everything here is selected for being healthy and bringing happiness on physical, emotional, regional, societal and global levels, based on the concept of enjoying a healthy life with good things in one’s own style.

HIEI sightseeing train on Eizan Electric Railway

The HIEI sightseeing train is ideal for casual trips from the center of Kyoto to Yase and Mount Hiei, where you can enjoy impressive natural environments. It started running in 2018, featuring a bold new design. From inside the carriages you can enjoy views of beautiful scenery and a great sense of the four seasons.

Hieizan Enryakuji Temple

This temple is the birthplace of Japanese Buddhism and was established as the head temple of the newly founded Tendai school of Buddhism in 788 by the monk Saicho. Many famous monks studied here. Hieizan Enryakuji Temple is a general term for the approximately 100 temple buildings spread throughout the cedar groves on Mount Hiei. It is also registered as a UNESCO World Heritage Site.

The Former Chikurin-in

Sakamoto prospered as a town built around Hieizan Enryakuji Temple at the foot of Mount Hiei. Here, there are still many remaining Satobo residences for retired Enryakuji Temple priests. The Former Chikurinin is one such residence – not only will you find streams and waterfalls drawn from nearby pristine streams in its garden, but also trees and moss cared for according to traditional garden landscaping methods.

Itinerary Map

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  • Approx. 2 hours 10 minutes by train and walk
  • 1 Approx. 20 minutes by train and walk
  • 2 Approx. 25 minutes by train and walk
  • 3 Approx. 25 minutes by train and walk
  • 4 Approx. 15 minutes by train and walk
  • 5 Approx. 1 hour 15 minutes by train and walk
  • 6 Approx. 30 minutes by cable car and walk
  • 7 Approx. 2 hours 20 minutes by train and walk
  • Please refer to the travel time as a guide

How to Get There

Kansai International Airport and Osaka ltami Airport provide convenient access to the Kansai area. There are lots of flights to both of these airports from Tokyo.


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