Last time we were in kamakura we ended up not taking a look at the great buddha, so this time we couldn’t miss it.
After Kamakura we stopped in Yokohama for a nice light dinner. It was amazing to see how much it had grown since we were last there back in 2013.
We then hopped on another train to Kyoto. We had to come back. However, we were surprised to see just how touristy this city has become. It is packed nearly everywhere, and it’s frankly a bit disappointed. We are “used to” a quiet Kyoto, with nearly nothing but locals, specially after night time, and we have found none of that. It is true that this is a busy tourist time, around spring, and that Kyoto, being smaller than Tokyo, you are bound to find more foreigners…but still.
Now don’t get me wrong, it is still beautiful, and the memories made here will never fade away.
Kiyomizu-dera was founded in the early Heian period (…) in 798, and its present buildings were constructed in 1633, ordered by the Tokugawa Iemitsu. There is not a single nail used in the entire structure. It takes its name from the waterfall within the complex, which runs off the nearby hills. Kiyomizu means clear water, or pure water.
Kiyomizu-dera is not only a buddhist temple, it’s a wonderful communion between men and nature, built on respect and admiration by the first to the latter. It’s a place for peace of mind and where one can simply awe, taking in the surroundings.
This was our last day in Kyoto. We took our bikes back and had time for a nice dinner before we headed to Tokyo. Kyoto is definitely deeply rooted in us, and we will not forget all those bike strolls around such a unique city.
Everything about Kyoto was incredibly special this time around. I don’t know what it was — maybe last time our expectations were just way too high? But the bikes played a very important role. It allowed us to see more, more of what Kyoto really is, and that felt so very exceptional, echoing deep within our hearts.
Here are a few more shots around higashiyama.
Weeks have been flying by me lately. One minute I’m getting up from my slumber on a dreaded Monday and the next, it’s already Friday and I’ve got so much to do already for the next Monday! It’s crazy… but it’s crazy good.
But here I am again, back on track (well, sort of) and sharing some more photos from Japan.
Nishiki Market is a wonderful array of everything beautiful and delicious, that can be found in Kyoto. We strolled around for quite a bit, trying to get out of the rain outside, and that’s when you start paying attention to certain details.
How nice people are to each other and to you; how everything is just so simple and easy — like building tables out of empty fish boxes; how everyone goes about their daily life, happy and content.
After an absolutely unique experience at Camellia we were led by Atsuko to another wonderful experience, that we had tried to do before, on our own, but couldn’t. Simply, we don’t understand Japanese, and you need to at least understand somewhat what you have on the menu. An Izakaya is a tavern-like establishment, a place to enjoy some drinks with family and friends, and some really tasty food.
This was a beyond awesome experience. It was most definitely one of the most incredible moment we had in Japan.
And here we are once again with Japan pics, finally!
These are just a few pics of the streets in Kyoto. This day we went to the aquarium in the morning. Salamanders there were not your normal salamander. These are giant Japanese salamanders that can grow up to two meters in length. They’re huge. And a just a teeny bit on the fugly side
They are the mascot of the aquarium and you’ve got an amazing choice of figurines and stuffed salamanders.
Back from the beach! The weekend was amazing! Could have been better if it wasn’t for the funny fact that I forgot to put sunscreen on my belly, and now it’s a shade darker than the rest of my body — lovely isn’t it? I tan fast, you see, heck, I get tanned from crossing the street! No, no, no, that is not a good thing… I get crazy tan lines.
I am also confined to the sofa or bed, because I have been having this funny (ah ah) pain near my left shoulder blade, that really comes and goes, but evolved yesterday, while I was laughing like crazy, to a not funny stab-with-a-knife kind of pain… So yes. Fun, fun, fun!
Let’s talk about something else. Kyoto. Oh yes.
After Nagoya, we arrived in Kyoto completely devoid of any will to do anything but stay in bed sleeping, but alas, we did not do that. We did however get ourselves a really delicious breakfast served in our room, at Hyatt Regency. The hotel was pretty amazing: spacious and pretty room, with a huge bed and an awesome walk-in shower. Also you could open the blinds without the fear of people seeing you half-naked — that’s always a plus. The breakfast was incredible. We had a combined breakfast for two, with a traditional Japanese breakfast, featuring miso soup, grilled fish, vegetables, rice, etc, etc; and a western breakfast, with the mandatory eggs and bacon, pastries, jams, bread, etc, etc.
After a well spent day in between little towns, we headed to Nagoya.
Nagoya is big and very business-y like. One of the first things we saw when we go there was a lady laying on the floor and a few of her friends surrounding her. I got immediately worried, but figured the situation was completely under control — as in, calling an ambulance an such — turns out she was out drunk, and everyone was laughing and behaving as if that was completely normal! Turns out, it is…
We would only be in Nagoya for a day, to visit the castle. We were incredibly tired, and we just wanted to get a good night sleep — the hotel we stayed in for the night before was decent, just on the verge of bad and we couldn’t really rest properly.
The castle is amazing! It reminded us a lot of Osaka’s castle, but of course this one was completely different in every detail inside and out. Golden carps were everywhere and there was a reenacting of ancient times, with samurais strolling around and old shops all over.