If it seems like each day I have packed in quite a crazy amount of stuff, well, you’d be right. Kyoto (and its surrounds) was the main destination on my trip that I knew I had a lot to see and do. Temples, Castles, Parks, Bamboo, Monkeys… a lot to get through in 6 days.
Well, today being my last day, and having pretty much checked the main things off my list, I decided to just chill. Now by chill I still donned the walking boots and headed out, but today with no real plan. It was the first cloudless day in Kyoto… 31 degrees and beautifully sunny. I couldn’t waste it! So I just decided to head off and re-experience some parts, as well as see what I could find for Ella and Jake (of course).
So today’s post is just a bit of a ramble about Kyoto as a whole, as I depart for Hiroshima tomorrow morning.
You could no doubt tell that I have loved Kyoto. The mix of city and tradition is pretty amazing. I have avoided the “city” side of things for the most part… shopping and bar hopping hasn’t been too high on my list of things to do. But I figured I have Tokyo to look forward to, so why not soak up ancient Japan?
As a first introduction to Japan, I think I made the ideal choice too. City enough to start dealing with public transport and crowds, but small enough not to be too overwhelming and all crazy-like.
A nice way to start too to experience that there is really not that much english around. Sure you never go too wrong in train stations and major places, but I have been surprised how many times ordering food and things like that, where it was all being polite and pointing at pictures. But hey, I would have been kinda disappointed if that wasn’t the case.
So yes, the people have been lovely. Whether it is in a shop, on the train, or on the street, I have not seen anything other than a warm welcome or respect. I am sure I will miss the cheerful sound of “Irrashaimase!” when I get home.
I know I will come back to Kyoto one day. Being here in summer, I am dying to see what winter is like. I think I have seen one too many postcards of temples and castles covered in snow…
So my favourite places? In no particular order:
– Himeji Castle (probably my number 1)
– Arashiyama Bamboo forest
– Wandering Nara
– Squeezing through the “nostril” in Todaiji Temple
See you again Kyoto I’m sure. Speak to you all from Hiroshima (assuming I have free wi-fi there too).
Kyoto is a magical place Matt!!! We are glad that you enjoyed.
Hiroshima is amazing. Enjoy the peace park and the museum in the park is one moving experience. Make sure you eat some “Hiroshimayaki” (Hiroshima’s version of okonomoyaki).
It all sounds amazing Matt! Hopefully you get that free wi fi at your next stop, so we can still keep up with you….plus this will be a great “journal” for you when you get back!! I’m sure Ella and Jake will appreciate you having a bit of a look around for them too!! Talk to you soon, xx