Just off the winding road that heads out of western Kyoto, from the Golden Pavilion past Ryoanji Temple and Ninnaji Temple, is the recently renovated Kyoto Utano Youth Hostel.
It was until recently a forlorn, beat-up, pre-fab structure. Now it is Japanese modern at its very best.
It is all beautiful wood flooring, a sloped tile roof, understated landscaping, tatami rooms--it is spectacular.
The new hostel has 29 dormitory rooms (4-6 people/room); in addition, there are four twins and eight triples.
Fees for the dorm rooms are 3,300 yen/night for those 19 or older (2,800 yen/night for children). The twins are 4,000/yen night (3,500 yen/night for children). All fees are per person.
Other facilities include a meeting room, tennis court, rent a cycle (600 yen/day), Internet (100 yen/20 minutes), and laundry.
In the front of the building is a spacious lawn; in the rear is a green courtyard.
Kyoto Youth Hostel
29 Nakayama-cho, Uzumasa, Ukyo-ku
Hostel web site
From Kyoto Station, get on at the B4 stop in front of the station. Take bus 26 to "Youth Hostel Mae."
From Keihan Sanjo, take bus 10 or 59 to "Youth Hostel Mae."
From Shijo Omiya, take bus 26 to "Youth Hostel Mae."
From Arashiyama, take bus 11 to "Yama goe Nake machi." 10 minute walk.
Take JR Saiin Line from Kyoto Station four local stops to Hanazono Station. A ten-minute cab ride.
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Thursday, November 06, 2008