Wednesday, November 10, 2010

Beautiful Kyoto, Japan - My Travel Reviews

It's bliss when you land in a sea of black suit knowing that you're on a holiday and can take it slower than the rest. And so my Kyoto journey begins on an early Wednesday morning...

Upon reaching Kyoto, I suggest you go to the bus ticketing office on the right of the main Kyoto Station exit and get yourself a day bus pass at 500 yen.

They'll provide a very comprehensive Kyoto sightseeing map with the bus routes. As you can see from above, it's real neat and tourist friendly. 

Just in case Kinkaku temple is your first stop and you decide to take bus 205, do note to not take the rapid one as it doesn't stop at Kinkaku Temple.

Here's a breathtaking view of the Golden Pavilion aka Kinkakuji Temple. It's beautiful in the morning when the sun shines on its golden facade.

Each of the 3 levels uses a different architecture style as explained below.

Its winter view is simply amazing. I'll want to go back to Kyoto in winter some day...

The walk in Kyoto was lovely. It's such an enjoyment to take in the beauty of the surrounding; The blend of nature with man's work. Walking from one place of attraction to the next was an enjoyment in itself.

Next, we went to the famous Ryoan-ji Zen Rock Garden.

It didn't help in calming bf down after I irritated him on the way in. I find looking at trees more zen than looking at rock. Or maybe he needed to sit there and learn to be zen, hehe...

The inside of this garden was pretty too.

We also visited the Kyoto Imperial Palace which was formerly occupied by the Imperial Family. The grounds around the palace is huge.

This is the road that runs leading through the Imperial Park and leads up to the main gate of the palace.

Path Running Through Middle of Kyoto Imperial Park

One Of The Palace's Gates

We arrived around 12 plus in the afternoon and was told to go to the Imperial Household Agency for registration. It was only there and then that we realised we had to register with passports and right after us, the staff closed for lunch.

Things to Note for Kyoto Imperial Palace Tour:
  • Tours are conducted 2 times daily at 10am and 2pm
  • Each tour lasts for an hour
  • Bring your passport along for registration
  • Be on time to enter the palace at the stated time
  • Imperial Household Agency is located to the west of the Kyoto Imperial Palace
The holidays angels must have been with us that day for we made it in time that day. Under the sunny bright blue sky, we rested our tired feet, filled our hungry bodies and starting to camwhore until 2pm. 

Here are some pictures of Kyoto Imperial Palace. It is a really old styled Palace without furnitures on display. As all the furnitures are small and movable, they're stored away currently.

The very knowledgeable tour guide showed us how the distinctive and expensive palace's cypress wood roof is made.

It's a very labour intensive process to construct the roof and they need to be changed every 30 years. She shared that the budget for 20010 has ran out hence the roof  replacement  for the area below is put on hold until 2011.

This was where the Emperor resided. The whole palace has link ways so that he wouldn't have to place his feet on the grounds outside when moving around. As such, the servants can only move around through the underground passages.

We then went on to the Kiyomizu-dera Temple (Water Temple) to catch the sunset view. However, we were distracted by souveniors, food and even Geishas on the way up.

It's a pity we didn't ask for a picture with them.

On The Way Up To Kiyomizudera Temple

High Up With A Splendid View

Love Talismans For The Hopefuls

Otowa-no-taki Waterfall

Drinking from the 3 streams are thought to confer longevity, wisdom and health. 

Missing The Sunset At Kiyomizudera Temple :(

The Kiyomizudera Temple is huge and we combed through it briefly. We went near the Gion District after that and was distracted by shopping in Takashimaya. :| After buying some stuff, we were really exhausted and headed back to Osaka.

Posting these pictures make me yearn for Kyoto again. Kyoto is really a gem like many have acknowledged.

One day is definitely not enough to explore this city of beauty... 

Pretty Entrance Tickets To Kyoto Attractions

**Read more about my Japan trip here.**

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