OWL Magazine Korea

Kyoto Arashiyama, Monkey Park “Iwatayama” (2023)

In Kyoto’s Arashiyama, there are various attractions to explore. Crossing the Katsura River, you’ll find Torokko trains, Tenryuji Temple, Togetsukyo Bridge, and other tourist spots. In the southern mountains of Arashiyama, there’s a place where you can encounter wild monkeys known as Monkey Park, named “Iwatayama.”

“Kyoto Arashiyama Monkey Park, Iwatayama”

Located atop Mt. Iwata in Kyoto, this resting place provides an opportunity to meet wild monkeys. Situated at an elevation of approximately 160 meters, the park is currently home to around 120 Japanese macaques. With the chance to observe monkeys up close and experience feeding them, the park has seen a surge in popularity among tourists, including those from overseas.

“Getting to Monkey Park”

Monkey Park is situated on a mountain and can be found south of Togetsukyo Bridge in Arashiyama. From the south, near the Katsura River where the “Ranryo Pilgrimage” embarks, you can find the entrance. Follow the sign with a monkey illustration to reach Monkey Park.

Climbing up a steep hill, you’ll come across a ticket booth selling entry tickets. The admission price is 550 yen per adult, roughly equivalent to 5,500 won.

“Monkey Park Midway View”

Monkey Park is visible from the midsection of the mountain. Although it sits at an altitude of 160 meters, it offers a refreshing view of Kyoto. Beyond the scenic view, you may find groups of monkeys casually mingling among people. It’s not uncommon to see monkeys sitting nonchalantly, unaffected by people passing by just next to them.

“Experience Feeding the Monkeys”

At Monkey Park, visitors have the chance to experience feeding the monkeys. Monkey feed is available for purchase at the park, with a limit of one set per person. The set, priced at 50 yen, roughly 500 won, includes two types: peanuts and fruits. Our group purchased two sets of peanuts for the experience.

Feeding takes place inside a secure area with metal fencing for the safety of both visitors and monkeys. Holding the feed, you’ll naturally attract monkeys to the fencing, where you can offer them the treats.

“Feeding Show”

At designated times, a caretaker conducts a “Feeding Show,” where monkeys are given food. During our visit, we were fortunate to witness the monkeys enjoying their meal up close. The monkeys seemed accustomed to the presence of people and were undisturbed even when close by. Moreover, with Monkey Park positioned at a considerable height, the panoramic view of Kyoto was quite charming.

While it may require some effort to climb to this hidden gem in Arashiyama, reaching the summit offers a rewarding and informative experience, providing a delightful time with the monkeys.

“Kyoto Arashiyama, Monkey Park Iwatayama”

  • Address: Japan, 〒616-0004 Kyoto, Nishikyo Ward, Arashiyama Nakaoshitacho, 61
  • Phone: +81758720950
  • Website: http://www.monkeypark.jp
  • Operating Hours: 9:00 – 16:00