If you are a monkey lover, Arashiyama Monkey Park Iwatayama in Kyoto is the place to go! Around 120 monkeys are living free without cage there.
Arashiyama Monkey Park is located half way up Mt. Iwata so you can also enjoy the 20 min forest walk. Although it is a bit challenging as the slops are pretty steep.
The panoramic view of Kyoto from the deck is breathtaking. Overlooking Kyoto city is a rare chance since there are no skyscrapers in Kyoto rather than Kyoto Tower due to the building height limit in Kyoto.
It is JPY 550 for Adults (age 16 or over) and JPY 250 for Children (age 4 to 15).
Children under 3 are admitted free of charge!
Arashiyama Monkey Park is open from 9am to 4pm and the top is open till 4:30pm everyday.
It gets closed in case of heavy rain and snow or the monkeys going back to the forest earlier!
There are 3 feeding times a day which are scheduled for 10:30am, 12:30pm and 2:30pm. However, the times vary depending on a season and a situation.
Alternatively you can buy food for the monkeys at JPY 100 at the park and feed them individually. It is banned to bring your own food for the monkeys.
Arashiyama Monkey Park is still open in the winter unless it rains and snows heavily.
The forest walk could be tougher in the winter as the path gets muddy more often so you should be well prepared wearing proper shoes!
How to get to Arashiyama Monkey Park Iwatayama
There are 3 train stations around.
The closest train station is Hankyu Arashiyama marked in blue at the bottom of the map below, it is only 5 min walk from the station to the entrance of the park. Although you need to transfer twice from Kyoto station.
Another train station is Randen Arashiyama marked in blue in the middle of the map, it is also close to the park and takes around 5 min on foot. You need to transfer once from Kyoto station.
The last station is JR Arashiyama which is further but more accessible from Kyoto station because you can get a direct train. It is around 15 min walk from the station to the park and the route is lined in blue on the map below.
Please remember you need to take another 20 min forest walk to the top!
Arashiyama Monkey Park and Bamboo Forest
Arashiyama Bamboo Forest (Grove) is one of the must visit spots in Arashiyama and it is close to the monkey park, just 15min away.
The bamboo forest is also marked in blue in the middle of the map. On the way from the monkey park to the bamboo forest, you will go through Togetsukyo Bridge which is another landmark of Arashiyama.