Kyoto was the third and final main destination of my trip and was probably my favorite part of the holiday. It didn’t seem as crowded and there was a lot more greenery to be seen. We were shown around by the daughter of one of the surgeons at the hospital I stayed at, which meant we got to see a lot of the best places during our short visit.
First up is Kyoto Station and the nearby Higashi Honganji. After visiting the temple we hired some bikes and spent the first day weaving between the crowds on the busy streets which was fantastic fun (and nobody yells at you because everyone does it!). We also visited the Manga Museum which was filled to the brim with issues dating back to the 1960s and people dedicating their day to reading, though unfortunately photos were not allowed.
After the Manga Museum we headed towards the Imperial Palace, though unfortunately we were not allowed to enter. At this point some types of Sakura were starting to blossom, so Japan was starting to look quite pretty.
Somehow we managed to accidentally book a love hotel (keep in mind I was traveling with another male student, so it looked pretty dodgy), though the website said nothing about it being one when we booked. At least it looked nice.
Just kidding. We were in the crappy place next door. At least there was a TV over the bath! Though every second channel was porn, which was awkward…and everything smelled of smoke…and who even knows what had happened on the bed/couch before we stayed there (who am I kidding? I think we all know what that room had been used for)…
The first place we visited with our guides the next day was the highlight of my trip: Fushimi Inari Taisha. It’s the shrine featured in Inari Konkon Koi Iroha and all of the gates have been purchased by individuals or companies and it took about 20 minutes of continuous walking to make it through to the end. Price guide is at the bottom.
Next up is Kiyomizudera, a large and famous temple, and its surroundings. The town around it was filled with interesting shops and is where I bought most of the souvenirs for my family and friends (that weren’t into anime).
Next up is Arashiyama’s bamboo forest and views from the associated mountain and surroundings. There were meant to be monkeys around but we didn’t see any.
Finally, enjoy seeing some mochi being made!
This was at a specialty mochi restaurant inside a shopping district in Kyoto. Unfortunately I was too distracted trying to follow my guides to take a picture of anything else there.
And that’s it for Kyoto! Next time…it’s the Food and Merchandise special!