Kyoto Autumn Leaves 2016 Wrap Up

The Fall foliage this year in Kyoto was amazing! Our previous post in mid November was dedicated to the Autumn colors that peaked in the first half of the season. This post will wrap things up for the season and give you a taste of why Kyoto looks its best in Autumn.


Still one of the best spots in the city to see the Fall colors, Arashiyama topped our list this year with incredible scenery. From the backroads leading up to Mt. Atago filled with quiet temples that most tourists overlook, to the well known tourist locations, nature really put on a show here on the western edge of Kyoto.

The best part about Autumn in Arashiyama is that the colors roll through the area in fixed intervals, allowing visitors to experience some great views for over one month's time. Leaves that already turned and fell at one temple are easily replaced on tours with another spot where the trees are just starting to turn gold and red. Unlike other parts of Kyoto that turn all at once, Arashiyama provided over a month of amazing scenery for our Arashiyama Backroads Tour.


Even though Nara lies 40 minutes south of Kyoto by train, KyoTours offers a half day tour of the old capitol city. The leaves in Nara usually turn color a bit later, but we happened to catch a beautiful day in mid November when the colors were just starting to come out. Isuien Garden was in top shape with a blue sky and some wonderful early Autumn scenery.

Nighttime Illuminations

Night events have become a big thing at temples and shrines in Kyoto in recent years. Many temples reopen after sunset and invite guests inside to marvel at the illuminated autumn leaves. It's a whole other world once the sun goes down, and the landscapes can change dramatically with the proper lighting. This is a must see when visiting Kyoto in Fall.

these particular pics above are from Entokuin, a wonderful small temple with an impressive dry garden. It's located just across the street from Kodaiji temple, which is another great spot to see Fall foliage lit up at night. We wrote a blog entry last year about the Kodaiji nighttime lightup even and the care that goes into creating their special gardens.

All Around Kyoto

KyoTours Japan guided guests to so many locations in Kyoto this Autumn, so here's a glimpse of various Fall landscapes from 2016 that we visited on our tours. Mid November is truly THE time to come experience Kyoto. The past month has been incredible, and we're looking forward to sharing it again with our guests next year!

Alright, Autumn, see you again in 2017. Now bring on the snow!