So you are off for a visit to Nijo Castle!
…to Nijo Castle!
Being a major tourist attraction in Kyoto, getting to Nijo Castle from Kyoto Station is relatively simple!
Nijo Castle bus
There’s a bus stop right in front of the entrance to Nijo Castle, so going by bus can be convenient.
Nijo Castle as part of a one day Kyoto itinerary
I made a visit to Nijo Castle with an unlimited one day Kyoto bus pass:
- Nijo Castle
- Kinkakuji Temple
- Ryoanji Temple
- Yasaka Shrine
- Gion to Kiyomizu-dera walk
- Kiyomizu-dera Temple
So once you’re at Kyoto station, you’ll head to the bus area.
There’s an information sign board that you can look at to figure out where to wait for the bus to Nijo Castle.
There is also a section specific to top tourist attractions.
There are also people there who are there to help you, so you can ask them too!
So then you’ll head over to the platform for Nijo Castle, and then wait for the bus to arrive!
It will likely be the same bus headed to Kinkakuji Temple, which is another world heritage site in Kyoto along with Nijo Castle.
As a popular tourist spot, there is a chance that there could already be a long line which could also make for a crowded bus.
So just be mentally prepared. 😉
Depending on your timing, you may end up on a normal city bus, or you may end up on a tourist city bus. There’s not much of a difference either way, except for the way they look!
See more tips for getting around Kyoto by bus (even without a bus pass).
What about the bus timings?
Being a major tourist attraction, the bus timings are frequent enough.
This means that you don’t really need to be as concerned about specific bus timings, as you likely won’t have to wait too long for the next bus to come no matter when you show up to the bus station.
Can you get to Nijo Castle by bus with a JR pass?
Short answer: YES!
There’s a JR bus in Kyoto, and this is the only bus that you can use your JR pass to get around Kyoto by bus.
The JR bus route is a bit more limiting, but the Nijo Castle IS one of the top attractions in Kyoto that you can get to, and you can get there from Kyoto station.
There is a platform for the JR bus at Kyoto Station.
Japan public transportation app for JR pass
Google Maps works well for getting around Kyoto if you’re not using a JR pass.
If you want to see what your options are for getting around using only a JR pass, check out the app JapanTravel Navitime. There’s an option there to filter “tourist pass” so that you can see the best way to get around using your JR pass.
Nijo Castle train?
There’s also a train station near Nijo Castle, called Nijo Station, and this is about a 10 minute walk from the castle.
Since this is a JR train, you can also get to Nijo Castle by train using your JR pass.
How long does it take to get to Nijo Castle?
Whether you go by bus or train, it’ll likely take around 20-30 minutes.
So even if you end up on a crowded bus, it won’t be too long of a bus ride!
Be sure to stop by the teahouse at Nijo Castle!
HAPPY KYOTO STATION TO NIJO CASTLE JOURNEY!
Use this Kyoto tourist map to plan out your 5 days in Kyoto with Nijo Castle!
- Day 1: Top tourist spots with one day bus pass
- Day 2: Fushimi Inari Shrine hike through 1,000 torii gates
- Day 3: Philosopher’s Path walk
- Day 4: Arashiyama and Sagano
- Day 5: Kurama Kibune Ohara with one day pass
More quick tips for planning your trip to JapanThere are affiliate links on this page that take you to partner websites.
For more on planning your trip to Kyoto, see the 1-day, 2-day, and 5-day Kyoto itineraries. If you'll be in Kyoto in the spring, also see the 1-day cherry blossom photo walk.
Hotels in KyotoSearch for deals on Kyoto hotels here.
For hostels across Japan, try this top backpacker's hostel chain.
Kyoto can also be a good place to stay at a Japanese-style ryokan, like this one. Or if you're on more of a budget, try this one.
Also use the map below to see more hotels in Kyoto!
The super fast train in JapanIn general, 2 long-distance shinkansen train trips will likely end up making it so the JR pass will be worth it.
See the current price of a JR pass from an official vendor.
See an example of traveling by the fast train from Tokyo to Kyoto.
NEW way of buying individual shinkansen train tickets online!I will start by saying I have NOT bought train tickets online this way (yet!) to verify this! (But it's on my list for my next trip to Japan!)
There's an online train ticket booking method that's popular for other parts of Asia, and they are just now branching out to Japan.
You can now buy train tickets online here for popular shinkansen train routes. (And some bus routes too.)
I've used this booking site for taking the train from Thailand to Malaysia, and it worked out well, so I would expect it to work out well in Japan too!
The thing is, though, that you need to pick up the physical train tickets in person.
So it won't be enough to just buy the tickets online. I had to do this in Bangkok for my train ticket - and it was easy! So again, I would think it'd be easy for Japan train tickets too.
Search for popular routes in Japan here. For example, Tokyo to Kyoto.
If you end up buying train tickets online this way, I would love to hear how it goes! Whether that's good, or if it came with some challenges!
Natural disasters in JapanUnfortunately, Japan can be prone to natural disasters which means risk for travel delays. So be sure to look at travel insurance for natural disasters.
My travel insurance took care of my accommodation and food costs when I was forced to stay extra days in Japan because of a typhoon.
See how much insurance costs for your trip.
Best travel guides for JapanIf you're at step 1 in your planning process, have a look at this Discover Japan book.
For "books" that won't take up space in your suitcase, see the best PDF guides.
See more of the best books for Japan trip planning.
Create your Japan itinerary
- 5 days in Kyoto
- Cost of climbing Mt Fuji from Tokyo
- Where to go for famous Mt Fuji views as seen in pictures
- Know before you go to Hiroshima
- One day in Miyajima with famous floating torii views
- 3 days in Okinawa, Japan's tropical islands
- Cherry blossom photo walk
- When is the JR pass worth it for train travel?
- Tokyo to Kyoto train
- Hostels in Japan