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Fushimi Inari Taisha is a 1,300 year old Shinto shrine located high up in the summit of Mount Inari. You'll get struck in awe with 10,000 torii gates that lines up neatly along the 2,5 mile long path. It might take hours to finally reach the summit, but the scenic view is all worth every sacrifices
Located at the western outskirts of Kyoto, Arashiyama will stun you with beautiful view of cherry blossoms during Spring, or the spectacular view of colorful leaves during Fall season. There are so many awesome spots you should totally visit, like Okochi Sanso Villa, a villa which former Japanese actor Okochi Denjiro once resided, observing troupe of snow monkeys in Monkey Park Iwayatama, and taking a peaceful afternoon stroll among bamboo groves
Sanjusangedo Hall is one of ancient temples that are listed as Japan's national heritage, not only for its grand architecture, but also because it contains rare set of 1,001 human-sized wooden statues of Goddess Kannon; Goddess of Mercy. The statues itself were carved in the 12th and 13th centuries.
Eikando Zenriji, or formally known as Zenri temple is a Buddhism temple belongs to Jodo sect (Jodo is one of the Japanese Buddhism sect). You can explore the beauty of its garden and several buildings like Shakado or Hall of the Historical Buddha, Miedo, and Amidado. Don't forget to sneak a peek at its most recognizable building, Tahoto Pagoda, a two-story pagoda structures where you can see stunning view of the whole temple ground and even the city of Kyoto.
Gion is famous for its history reflected in traditional houses, traditional tea houses, you can also shop antique souvenirs and local handicrafts for loved ones at your home country. But among all the beauties Gion has offered, Geisha is the primadonna. You can spot Geisha almost everywhere and you can even ask them to entertain you during dinner.
Known for its spectacular natural view, it's a no-brainer that Kiyomizudera become one of the most famous tourist destinations in Kyoto. You can see panoramic view of trees surrounding the temple from the main temple's verandah which stand on more than 40 feet above the hillside.
Kyoto is one of our top city recommendations to visit if you want to explore the full beauty of Japan. Tokyo and Osaka might charm you with its modernity, but Kyoto will pulls you back in traditional Japan time. Here you'll find a serene environment surrounded by traditional Japan's heritages, including 2,000 temples and 400 shrines. If you come to certain places you might also see people clad in traditional kimono, you can even meet some Geisha here! You might not have enough time to visit all the tourist attractions in Kyoto, but at least you should visit our top recommendations below.
How to Get Tickets?
Most of the shrines and temples (except Fushimi Inari Taisha) are gathering tickets with various range of prices. It's much better to purchase or book your tickets online. Not only you can get your tickets in advanced, you will be able to skip the long lines especially if you go to Kyoto's popular attractions in weekends or holidays.
How To Get Around?
Subway is the most common transportation mode used to go around Kyoto. There are two subway networks in Kyoto, KARASUMA and TOZAI lines. It is an ideal transportation if you are going to visit any attractions located near the city's center. Some attractions are also reachable on foot or by riding on a bicycle, although you might want to ride on a bus or a train to reach further ones. For the most convenient but also the most expensive, you can hail a taxi that will immediately takes you to any destination in Kyoto.
What Should I Wear?
Conservative but also stylish clothes are popular among Japanese. You can see many young Japanese wear osshare or fashion-forward outfits with some accessories. You can go easy on your outfits when you're exploring Tokyo, just make sure that you're not wearing clothes with too low necklines or overly short shorts. Keep your flip-flops in hotel and opt for some fashionable and comfortable shoes or ankle boots instead.
Best Time to Visit
Kyoto's scenery is at its utmost beauty in Spring which falls from March to May and Fall season from October to November. The weather is warm and nice, plus you'll get to see cherry blossoms blooming in spring and change of foliages in Fall.
Will I Need a Guide?
No, a guide is not needed since Kyoto is considered a small town. It's easy to explore because of the convenient and easy-to-access public transportations. Even riding a bicycle is great here. But, if you want to travel to less mainstream places and get more deep information about the places that you're visiting, a guide is not a bad option. The guide can also help you get to local restaurants without worrying about language barrier. Half day or one day guide is enough to give you insights but still give you chance to explore the city yourself on the next days.
How To Get There?
Getting to Kyoto from neighborhood city Tokyo can be done by taking Shinkansen Hikari bullet train. Both cities are connected with Tokaido Shinkansen Line, owning a JR (Japan Rail) Pass will be so much helpful. If you want to enjoy a much leisure trip and don't mind the train taking stops at several smaller towns, you can take Kodama Line instead. Both Shinkansen HIkari and Shinkansen Kodama are included inside JR Pass.
If you're going to use Kyoto's public transportations frequently, owning a Kyoto Sightseeing Card will be a great help. You'll be eligible for unlimited rides for subway and the buses for two consecutive days. The card can be purchased for 1200 yen or about $10.68.