1. Fushimi Inari Taisha, 2. Daigoji Temple, 3. Fushimi Inari Taisha look out
Kyoto is famous for its temples, gardens, traditional wooden houses and imperial palaces; it is Japan’s traditional and cultural capital.
If you’re visiting Kyoto you can expect to see immaculately dressed geishas, intricate shrines and temples, bamboo forests and if you’re lucky enough to visit at the right time, you’ll see the beautiful, blooming cherry blossom trees.
Kyoto is a beautiful city any time of the year. I visited at the start of winter, but was lucky enough to catch the last of the beautiful red, orange and yellow autumnal leaves before they all fell. My dream is to visit in spring to catch the cherry blossoms though! Although, whatever season you visit in, you’ll be amazed by the city.
You need at least two days in Kyoto, but next time I go I’ll be staying 3-4 to fully immerse myself in the culture.
4. Fushimi Inari Taisha, 5. Daigoji Temple, 6. Daigoji Temple
Fushimi Inari Taisha and Daigoji Temple-
Due to unforeseen circumstances (Fuji not showing itself), we spent an extra day out at Fuji hoping to see it, which was meant to be spent in Kyoto, so that only left us with one full day to explore Kyoto. This was definitely not enough time.
In the morning we went to Fushimi Inari Taisha. I would allow about 3-4 hours to freely roam around this attraction. Once you get through the beginning entrance with the hustle and bustle of the crowd, it is a peaceful walk. If it is raining, this may not be pleasant as it is all outdoors with no shelter.
Then we caught a train and a bus to Daigoji Temple. An hour to walk around here is plenty of time. As you can see, this was beautiful to visit in Autumn with all the colours of the changing leaves.
7. Daigoji garden, 8. Fushimi Inari Taisha
I stayed at the Kyoto Utano Youth Hostel. This was in a great location, as there is a stop on the bus line! It also had a traditional onsen to which you can bathe in if you choose.
9. Daigoji Temple, 10. Daigoji Temple,
Travelling from Kyoto to Osaka:
Since I had the JR Rail Pass already, I took the JR Kyoto Line to Osaka Station which only took about 30 minutes.
This always makes me laugh because I didn’t do enough research on this when planning my itinerary and I thought it would be a few hours of travel, so my friend and I ordered too much McDonald’s to take on the train with us that I hadn’t even gotten a quarter way through my food when the train announced we had arrived at Osaka!