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Travel News Kyoto sightseeing bus service to counter overtourism


Unswerving cyclist
14 Mar 2002
The city of Kyoto has started operating limited express sightseeing buses that stop at only major tourist spots to ease the so-called "over-tourism" problem, including tourists overcrowding city buses, which are a means of transportation for residents.

The express buses run on two routes in the Higashiyama district in eastern Kyoto, where many tourist attractions are concentrated. "EX100" buses run 24 times daily, connecting JR Kyoto Station and the Ginkaku-ji Silver Pavilion via the Gojo-zaka stop near Kiyomizu-dera Temple, the Gion stop and Heian Jingu Shrine. "EX101" buses run 16 times daily, directly connecting JR Kyoto Station and the Gojo-zaka stop. On both routes, the service is operated on Saturdays, Sundays, and holidays, as well as over the Obon period in mid-August and the year-end and New Year's holidays. Announcements on the bus are made in Japanese, English, Korean and Chinese.


The routes are within the area where a flat fare of 230 JPY (about USD1.50) for adults is applied for regular city buses, but the sightseeing buses charge a flat 500 JPY (USD3.30). The fare was set based on the revised Road Transport Vehicle Act, which allows fares on regularly scheduled sightseeing routes to be changed upon notification by the operator. Residents can also ride on the express buses for the same fare, but commuter passes, and coupon tickets cannot be used.

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