Kyoto is home to some of the best restaurants in the world. There is something for everyone no matter what type of cuisine you are looking for.
In this article we will guide you through the very best restaurants that Kyoto has to offer, telling you everything that you need to know about the restaurant and the type of cuisine that they have on offer.
Restaurants in Kyoto
If you are heading to Kyoto as a tourist then you will want to know exactly where to visit to eat the best food no matter your preference of cuisine type.
For that reason we will not be including any restaurants or eateries that are too inconveniently located, overpriced, or are hard for foreigners to navigate (for example, a lack of English or foreign languages available).
So, to find out more about Kyoto’s top restaurants keep reading.
Where to go for the best sushi
Azuma sushi is one of our top three picks for sushi in Kyoto thanks to its unpretentious setting, which is located in easily-accessible Southern Higashiyama.
This restaurant offers sushi for mid-range prices and is the perfect, low-key establishment to enjoy authentic sushi in a local neighborhood.
Sushisei is another great choice for sushi in Kyoto and again is priced as mid-range. It won’t break the bank but it certainly is worth a visit. The restaurant is located in the downtown area and the staff is polite and helpful to foreigners.
Den Shichi is our third pick for sushi in Kyoto as it is perhaps one of Kyoto’s most approachable restaurants. The restaurant boasts a classic sushi bar style and its range of fresh sushi is one of the best in the area.
Den Shichi is located in central Kyoto makes it very easy to find for a quick stop for some delicious food.
Where to go for the best cafes
Cafe bibliotech hello! has reasonable prices and is very affordable. As you may guess from its name this cafe is super quirky and hip, making it very popular with the younger crowd.
The funky interior design certainly sets it apart and the food is excellent too.
% Arabica Higashiyama can be found in Southern Higashiyama and offers food and drinks for a decent price, classing it as a budget cafe.
Its fantastic location, on a side street leading up to the Yasaka-no-To Pagoda, means that it is not out of the way. The coffee shop’s interior also makes it a very pleasant place to stop for something to eat or drink.
Kurasu Kyoto is another fantastic cafe in Kyoto that can be found near the Kyoto station, making it a great option if you are hungry after a long trip or after something for your journey.
If you are a coffee fan then this is certainly the cafe for you. In addition, the cafe’s staff speak English and are very friendly towards foreigners.
Where to go for the best Gyoza
Gyoza Hohei, located in Southern Higashiyama, is a budget restaurant offering amazing gyoza. If you are tired after a long day then the garlic-fuelled gyoza at this restaurant is sure to be the perfect pick-me-up.
The restaurant is located right in the middle of the geisha district.
Tiger Gyoza Kawaramachi is a restaurant in downtown Kyoto that offers mid-priced, but excellent-quality food. There is a very wide array of dumplings on the menu, so you can be sure to find your favorite no matter if you prefer fried, boiled, or steamed.
Kyoto gyoza bar Anzukko is another budget/mid-range restaurant that offers fantastic gyoza. This bar is found near Sanjo station in a back alley, but that does not take away from its charm. This restaurant has become known for its innovations and new flavors.
Where to go for the best okonomiyaki
Oagari is just by the popular Yasaka Shrine and even though this restaurant is located in a spot that is rather touristy, this restaurant is anything but.
Donguri is located in downtown Kyoto and has been in operation since 1977. Its mission is to serve fantastic and tasty food using local ingredients.
They have become well-known for their flavorful okonomiyaki. In addition to this Donguri offers many hearty meals, perfect for keeping you warm in the colder winter months.
Yamamoto Mambo can be found just beside Kyoto station and is another mid-priced restaurant. This restaurant is very popular with the locals, but also easy for foreigners to navigate.
Using iron griddles they serve up some of the best okonomiyaki in all of Kyoto and the restaurant is family-run.
Where to go for the best ramen
No name ramen is a restaurant that may appear a little gimmicky, niche, or over the top, but the food is certainly worth the hype. Their authentic and delicious ramen is sure to become a favorite.
No name ramen can be found in downtown Kyoto and is a great place to relax with a warming bowl of ramen after a long day.
Towzen is a restaurant that is located in central Kyoto, making it very easy to find and visit. What’s better is that this restaurant offers fantastic ramen dishes on a budget.
Their wide variety of ramen dishes caters to everyone, even vegans thanks to their soy milk ramen.
Ramen Muraji is another budget-friendly restaurant but this time in southern Higashiyama. Despite being at the center of Gion, this restaurant offers a little bit of relaxation and respite from the hustle and bustle.
However, this restaurant is very popular and if you are planning on visiting during either lunchtime or dinnertime you should be prepared to wait a short while. However, there are not normally lines at other times of the day and you should be seated straight away.
Where to go for the best izakaya
Kikkoya is a fantastic choice if you are on the hunt for izakaya in Kyoto. This restaurant is located downtown but is easily accessible. Their food is reasonably priced and the restaurant falls into the mid-range category for pricing.
If you are looking for something unpretentious then this is the place for you as they serve homestyle meals.
Jojo can be found near Kyoto station and offers a casual experience. This restaurant’s great location and amazing choice of food and drink mean that it is popular with both locals and tourists – so expect it to get busy quickly.
If you are heading off on a journey, or just finished one, then this is a fantastic place to stop.
Suiba Shijo Kawaramachiten is located in downtown Kyoto and offers budget food, but this does not mean that it is any less tasty.
It is a standing izakaya, making it the perfect place for a quick stop with friends before heading out for the night. They have a great range of food and drink options on offer so that there is something for everyone here.