I have a soft spot for the beauty that is Kyoto. This fairytale land is quiet, strikingly beautiful, and oh so clean. With it’s countless temples, lush scenery and colourful vistas, the city feels like one big amusement park, except much cooler than man-made scream coasters and cotton candy.
It’s a tourist city that attracts outsiders as well as their own kind, the Japanese from all parts of the country flock to this amazing place. I ran into a lot of tourists from Italy, they were everywhere.
To experience Japanese lifestyle and hospitality, I booked a traditional Ryokan guesthouse instead of a hotel. This is where you sleep on tatami matted floors. Spending four days in Tokyo prior and getting to know Japanese culture made me totally at ease for this sleeping on the ground business. As expected, it was very comfortable, quiet, and spotless.
Some of the places we visited included Fushimi Inari Shrine – an endless shrine of beautiful orange gates spread across a thick wooded mountain. The Golden Pavilion, Arashiyama Bamboo Grove, Philosopher’s Walk, Gion District – famous entertainment and geisha quarter and an unforgettable day trip to Kibune and Kurama-dera which included hiking in the mountains and an even more unforgettable onsen experience.
I think about Kyoto with a warm heart. A must see for anyone visiting Japan.
A few more pics from the day trip to Kibune and Kurama-dera. LUSCIOUS!