Art Walk in Kyoto’s Okazaki Area
Kyoto’s Okazaki area is dotted with famous sightseeing spots such as Heian-jingu Shrine, Lake Biwa Canal, and Nanzenji Temple, but it also thrives with culture and art, being home to several art museums and theaters. Take a walk through the quiet, peaceful, and culturally rich atmosphere of the area.
Access: Higashiyama Station or Keage Station (Subway)
Kyoto City KYOCERA Museum of ArtThe Kyoto City KYOCERA Museum of Art reopened in Spring 2020. First built in 1933, the main building was known for its amalgamation of Japanese and Western-style design. It now incorporates a modern design while preserving its original essence, and is in itself a work of art. The rooftop terrace of the new contemporary art gallery “Higashiyama Cube” offers a view of the Higashiyama mountains that is as splendid as the architecture of the building. Be sure to also drop by the museum cafe “ENFUSE,” where you can gaze up at the o-torii gates of Heian-jingu Shrine through the glass window.
Photo: Koroda Takeru
Kyoto City KYOCERA Museum of Art
124 Okazaki Enshoji-cho, Sakyo-ku, Kyoto City, Kyoto
The National Museum of Modern Art, KyotoThe National Museum of Modern Art, Kyoto focuses on artwork from western Japan, mainly Kyoto, collecting and displaying paintings, crafts, and photographs. The building is prized for its sleek and modern architectural design, the achievement of architect Fumihiko Maki. Located next to the canal, the museum cafe “café de 505” serves handmade pasta and Japanese sweets such as mitsumame (mixture of boiled beans, agar cubes, fruit pieces). On sunny days, make sure to take advantage of the outdoor terrace seats.
photo by Kunihiro Shikata
photo by Norimasa Kawata
photo by Yoshinori yamazaki
The National Museum of Modern Art, Kyoto
Okazaki Enshoji-cho, Sakyo-ku, Kyoto City, Kyoto
The Hosomi Museum KyotoThis museum mainly showcases the collections of three generations of the Hosomi Family, starting with that of business mogul and Japanese art collector Kokoan Hosomi. The building incorporates a modernized concept of “Wa” (Japanese-style) with three floors above ground and two basement floors. On the uppermost floor is the “Kokoan Japanese Tearoom” which offers an expansive view of the peaks of the Higashiyama mountains. CAFE CUBE also has a spacious terrace with a 5-story atrium, and visitors can try some of their delicious pasta and pizza.
The Hosomi Museum Kyoto
6-3 Okazaki Saishoji-cho, Sakyo-ku, Kyoto City, Kyoto
BLUE BOTTLE COFFEE Kyoto CafeTake a break from your stroll with a delicious cup of coffee. The cafe is located inside a renovated Kyo-machiya (traditional Japanese townhouses in Kyoto) with over 100 years of history. The large glass windows and tall atrium ceiling provide an open, unconstrained atmosphere. On the second floor is a “The Lounge -Kyoto-,” a reservation-only area. It is a luxurious space where you can enjoy three types of specialty coffees and seasonal desserts served as a course.
*Dessert menu changes seasonally
BLUE BOTTLE COFFEE Kyoto Cafe
64 Nanzenji Kusagawa-cho, Sakyo-ku, Kyoto City, Kyoto
Kyoto Okazaki Tsutaya BooksThe 1st-floor BOOK & CAFÉ offers an array of books on art and life in Japan personally selected by the proprietor, as well as made in Kyoto crafts and lifestyle goods. On the 2nd floor is the “Kyoto Modern Terrace” restaurant where you can find numerous dishes that utilize seasonal ingredients, such as Western cuisine made with Kyoto ingredients. The terrace seats from which you can see the o-torii gates of Heian-jingu Shrine are popular among visitors.
★Take a breezy excursion on a rental bicycle!
Okazaki has few hills and is easy to take a ride around. Try exploring the area on a bicycle!
Kyoto Okazaki Tsutaya Books
Rohm Theater Kyoto Park Plaza 1F, 13 Okazaki Saishoji-cho, Sakyo-ku, Kyoto City, Kyoto
Murin-anMurin-an was once the holiday home of Yamagata Aritomo, a statesman who was active during the Meiji (1868-1912) to Taisho (1912-26) periods. You can enjoy the modern Japanese garden that includes water from the Lake Biwa Canal, waterfalls, and ponds. You can spend a moment of relaxation at the garden cafe with a 180-degree view of the stunning garden. The autumn foliage that bursts with color each year from mid- to late November is also an impressive sight to see.
*Reservations are needed to enter. Please check the latest updates on the website.
31 Nanzenji Kusagawa-cho, Sakyo-ku, Kyoto City, Kyoto
*The information herein is as of August 2021.