Famous Landmarks In Kyoto That Await!

Famous landmarks in Kyoto are mostly shrines and temples, as it is the previous imperial capital city of Japan. Even if Kyoto is not the only place in Japan, it is one of the best cities in Japan which is worth everyone’s attention. It offers the beauty of Asia that it represents truly in every inch. So, what are those landmarks that everyone should never miss?

Fushimi Inari-taisha Shrine

Since the 15th century, this shrine remains its glory. The Fushimi Inari-Taisha Shrine is highly famed for its more than ten thousand torii gates which can open to each other. 

Visitors will never doubt to walk through the shrine which is very adventurous. There are also some hiking trails nearby the shrine, where tourists can try hiking to reach the peak of Mount Inari.

Kinkaku-ji Temple

It is truly the first among amazing places in Kyoto that every tourist recommends to his friends. Kinkaku-ji Temple is 13 meter-high, in which every visitor can witness the natural beauty of the quiet pond and forests around it. What’s surprising is the temple’s easy access from the center of Kyoto, regardless of its natural surroundings.

The amazing part of this temple is its gold leaves covering the temple’s two levels. This is where everyone can witness the remarkable gold reflection from the pond. 

The gold leaves usually appear during the summer. Yet, the winter in this place is not less amazing, where the snow covering the temple’s roof can really please the eye.

For sure, be prepared with the crowd. Yet, it is best to visit this place very early.

Ginkaku-ji Temple

This blissful temple was built around the 14th century by Ashikaga Yoshimasa as Jisho-ji. Its popularity may not be as high as the previously mentioned temple. 

But, it should be on everyone’s list of tourism destinations in Kyoto. It was believed that this temple was once planned to be covered with the silver tone. 

But, the project was not accomplished. Yet, this Zen temple is still adorable, where every visitor can learn the culture of Higashiyama from the library-theme relic.

Visitors mostly love to sit in the striking garden in this temple. There lies a Sea of Silver Sand as well as the moonlight reflection platform that usually reflects the full moon to the Silver Pavilion. 

No wonder, this place is not less crowded than Kinkaku-ji, particularly in the afternoon. So, visiting this place very early in the morning is highly recommended, for the sake of the serene atmosphere.

Fushimi Inari-taisha Shrine

This is a wonderful shrine where everyone still can smell the fresh air of the Arashiyama Mountains. Within this shrine, there are still several shrines along the way where visitors can enjoy several food and drinks that many shops sell. 

Some adventurers find the Arashiyama mountain hiking trail challenging, so there are lots of hikers here during the spring. This place is not too far from the heart of Kyoto, so it should be on the list of the most recommended places in Kyoto. 

Some visitors try their luck by giving a donation here, because of some superstitions which claim that visiting and donating this temple can bring luck. Well, donating is always a good thing, right?

After exploring the temple, continue the trip to the Arashiyama Bamboo Grove. This is definitely the place where some people think that such an amazing forest really exists! Some tourists may find this very awkward for the first time. 

But, they eventually find this trip amazing as they can witness the dense bamboos, once they go deeper into the forest. Be amazed that there are some other temples nearby this bamboo small forest. Tenryu-ji Temple is one of them. 

Surrounded by such a good looking flowery garden, this place is worth everyone’s shot. Another recommended temple to visit is Gio-ji Temple, where there are some events like dancing and other Japanese cultural activities. Other temples that visitors can enjoy here include Adashino Nenbutsu-ji Temple, Otagi Nenbutsu-ji Temple, and Daikaku-ji Temple.

For another amusing experience, try visiting Kameyama-koen Park. Unless visitors are afraid of seeing a bunch of monkeys, then it is definitely worth visiting. Anyway, this spot offers the best panorama of the Iwataytama Monkey Park where Togetsu-kyo Bridge also lies.

Ryoan-ji Temple

This refurbished temple lies in northwestern Kyoto where it remains as the ‘silent witness’ of 1467’s Onin Wars. Known as the temple of the peaceful dragon, one of the most famous landmarks in Kyoto is very popular for its Kyoyochi Pond which is very unique with its mirror shape. 

The water birds around the pond add the charm as they seemly welcome all visitors who are about to visit the monk dwelling place. This temple is actually very well-known for its Zen garden, named Karesansui. There are several stones around the garden which are classified as very mysterious, due to their visibility and pattern which never look the same every time.

Minami-za Theatre

Everyone agrees that this place is the most popular spot for enjoying a kabuki performance. Kabuki is highly popular in Kyoto, as we can say that it represents Kyoto and its unique culture. Kabuki is a Japanese traditional drama that focuses on unique phenomena. 

Anyway, this theater is very famous for its routine kabuki performance, as it is the oldest theatre in Japan, where Kabuki performance has become the routine show since the Edo Period. Watching kabuki is interesting, even if the viewers know nothing about Japanese language at all. However, viewers here should be ready with the long-show.

Yasaka Shrine

Don’t be confused when most Japanese call this a Gion Shrine. It is an excellent place to enjoy the lanterns glowing which can deliver such a great relaxation. Since the 13th century, it has been one of the most famous landmarks in Kyoto. 

The best place to visit this shrine is when the night comes, where the lanterns are glowing romantically. Those lanterns are from Japanese businessmen who donate for luck. July is the recommended month to visit this shrine, as the summer offers beautiful scenery. 

Besides, there is also an annual Gion Matsuri festival here, in which its popularity remains for centuries. This festival offers the colorful floats procession that amazes tourists worldwide. Don’t forget that this place is also popular for enjoying the blossoming sakura and cherry, particularly in Maruyama Park, adjacent to this shrine.

Nijo Castle

Let’s try visiting other famous landmarks in Kyoto than just temples and shrines. Nijo Castle is another charm of Kyoto, where it represents the glorious Japanese during the medieval age. 

Built during the 16th century, it once had a tower that was already destroyed. It only left moats and ruined walls. Yet, this place is still very charming with its abundant structures collection representing the shogun warlords history.

There are also Ninomaru Palace’s five buildings within this castle ground, as well as the giant chamber or Ohiroma. Tourists can also enjoy the unique Tozamurai guardhouse with its exclusive interiors, featuring the ornamented panels. 

The nightingale floors will squeak when there are some people stepping down. For sure, this is definitely amazing.

Gion District

Formerly known as Gion-Shinbashi, it is well-known as a major teahouse in the middle of Kyoto. But, it still maintains the charm of rustic Japan during the medieval age. Here, visitors still can see some geishas walking down the street, particularly during the night. ‘

Anyway, this place is not the only amazing place to enjoy authentic Japanese tea and see the incredible ambiance of Kyoto, but also the lining cherry trees along the Shirakawa Minami-dori street. This district also boasts the Yasaka Hall which provides routine Japanese cultural performances like a tea ceremony, geisha kyo-mai dancing, and ikebana.

For another excellent adventure, visit Shirakawa River near the district, where everyone can enjoy such a tranquil atmosphere.

Kyoto The Imperial Palace

There is no doubt that this place is the historical representation of the Japanese empire. As the main dwelling place of the previous Japanese emperor, this imperial palace never loses its glorious appearance. 

Surrounded by such a thick wall, this palace hosts several gates before everyone can take a look within where there are gardens, halls, and shrines. The entry ticket is free, so this should be one of the main destinations for those who want to enjoy Kyoto with a limited budget. 

Some visitors consider that this place is ‘less glorious’ than the aforementioned shrines and temples. But, this place should never be missed, particularly its gardens.

Nishiki Market

It is not only a market and one of the most famous landmarks in Kyoto It has been a historical trading place that has catered to the needs of the nearby people for approximately four centuries. During the old days, it was merely a common street market. 

But now, it turns out to be the most popular place for enjoying several kinds of delicacies, as well as the hardly-known kinds of seafood that every visitor can enjoy. The smell of the delicious Japanese food welcomes all visitors, who will have no doubt in enjoying all the available snacks and foods in this place.

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