I don’t understand why this place got categorised as a hostel. I mean, just look at it. The place was over 100 years old. The facilities and ambiance was excellent. Plain hardcore value for money!


Sanjo-dori Shirakawahashi-nishiiru Futasujimekudaru Furukawa-cho-7631.JPGThis photogenic hostel was conveniently located in the Higashiyama district aka Kiyomizu shrine was within 15min’s reach by bus (door to door), the crazy Sanjo-street was within 20min’s walking distance (I took too many photos along the way to be accurate). Plus it’s next door to local food/veg market AND McDonald was only 5min walk away 😛 haha

Okay, let’s get serious and talk about the hostel.hostel-haruya-kyoto-7625.JPGInstant love haha It could be hell for light sleeper. These walls were THIN. Like almost paper thin but made of wood? For people who are NOT fans of the tatami smell, it could also be an issue. For me, it was all love. This house was 100+ old! It’s all the quirks that I expected.hostel-haruya-kyoto-7627.JPGThe most important part was that the shower water pressure was STRONG. So needless to say, I loved my stay(s). Below photos were from the corner room on 2nd floor.

Corner room, second floor

Corner room, second floor

The kitchen was all cuteness and had all the utensils to prepare a fab Japanese meal. Spotlessly clean like virtually all Japanese establishment.

Now, the common area was a beauty! All the kyoto travel books that anyone would ever need haha.hostel-haruya-kyoto-common-area-7624O, just because it’s a budget trip, that did not stop me from doing food porn. Food porn is for EVERYONE and any occasion. All food/drinks were purchased from Lawson convenient store 😉 Plates, glasses, trays… were all from the hostel.

For 3 nights, I paid JPY17,820 for the smaller room (corner, 2nd floor). Summer, peak season 😉

Here’s the photo for the larger room on 2nd floor. I forgot the price for this one. Sorry.


  • The stairs were STEEP… NOT toddler safe at all if you have one the rooms upstairs.
  • There only 1 large room on the ground floor. It could fit 4?
  • 4 rooms upstairs
  • Wifi was free and the signal was strong 😀
  • Bicycles were available for rental. I forgot the price; sorry.
  • Any luggage larger than a carry-on will make your own life difficult (the smaller room).
  • Smoking was strictly forbidden. The hostel and the neighbours were all wooden houses…
Photo taken in the larger room on 2nd floor

Where was I?

Hostel Haruya Kyoto


〒605-0026 京都府京都市東山区三条通白川橋西入二筋目下る古川町542-4

605-0026 Kyoto, Kyoto, Higashiyama-ku Sanjo-dori Shirakawahashi-nishiiru Futasujimekudaru Furukawa-cho


I booked via rakuten (local Jap). Reservation is available on booking.com as well. Check out all your options before you decide 😉

This place is available on booking.com as well.


**Please note that booking.com link is an affiliated link. I will earn a small commission for any purchase made via this link.

The friendly local clearly had a hard time with my camera. This was the only shot with the 2 of us sort of in focus *LOL* Very sweet actually, the person did not give up even after 6 tries. By that time, we gave up haha.

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Camera: Canon 5D mark 3



Salut, I am Joyce. 40 something living in Paris. Appreciate little things and share giggles. Prudent, no nonsense reviews. #ExploreLaughRepeat


  1. Kiyomizu-dera is beautiful! The whole area is so picturesque. But soooo busy. Funny story: when we were there, my SO got stopped by a group of school children who had an assignment to speak English to a foreigner and they asked him a bunch of questions like “Is this your first visit to Japan?” “Do you like Japan?” XD
    This hostel looks really nice! And so inexpensive. It’s less of a hostel and almost like a Ryokan! I love Lawson and I miss all the great Japanese convenient stores… is that a yuzu drink you have there?

    • Wahahah What did you SO say? Did he say anything bizzare? *LOL*

      Ja, I don’t understand how this place qualified as a hostel besides their winner price *LOL* Yup, that was Yuzu. Well, spotted. It was so strong. We were knocked out. A bottle for 2 was not a fab idea.

    • Exactly! I found out many people don’t like it though. That ‘straw’ smell apparently smell too ‘savage’? Each to their own, I guess 😉 Thank you for reading.

  2. What a fabulous-sounding place. When I read the part about the tatami mat…oh my gawd…it immediately reminded me of the tatami that my parents had in their home. I love that smell! Thanks for an awesome post and for bringing back some fond memories.

    • You parent fitted tatami at home? How was the maintenance? That was the only thing that puts me off importing them for my home. What did they use? Serious vacum? What did they use for cleaning?

  3. A great place Joyce to me its an old fashioned traditional Ryokan before the appeal to rich people took many to a higher level. Kyoto is full of wonderful places to stay.

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