For our day in Kyoto we picked two of the main tourist attractions to visit; Kiyomizu dera temple and Fushimi Inari shrine, both situated on the eastern edge of the city. It was another hot, humid and overcast day as we made our way to one of the most famous temples in Kyoto. As many temples and shrines in Kyoto do, Kiyomizu-dera has a long history, with the temple being founded in 778 and the buildings constructed in 1633. You reach the temple grounds after walking through a bustling street of stores selling traditional Japanese goods, such as sweets, pottery and clothing.
The temple grounds don’t house just the famous wooden veranda but also a number of beautiful gates, temples and gardens.
The main draw in Kiyomizu-dear is the long wooden veranda overlooking the woods and temples. This part of the temple was built during the Edo period, and was built entirely without nails! The view from the veranda is nice but the best shot is further round to really see the pillars holding up the floating veranda. I would say this was one of the busiest places I have visited in Japan!
After having our fill of temple time we headed back to Kyoto station to try an all you can eat sukiyaki restaurant, just across from Kyoto station above Yodabashi camera. Here you have 1.5 hours to eat as much food as you can! Simply choose a meat type and quality and either sukiyaki or shabu shabu and off you go. Often people get a little confused that some of the best food in Japan is that which you cook yourself, but try sukiyaki and it’ll be near the top of your list too!
After lunch we had planned to go to Fushimi Inari and climb up to the top of the mountain. DO NOT have all you can eat sukiyaki and then expect to climb a mountain… it is not going to happen haha. We got through 6 bowls of rice, 6 plates of meat and about 10 bowls of vegetables…
Fushimi Inari is a really lovely shrine that I have written more about here, we climbed to the first area of shrines through the torii gate but then turned around and slumped ourselves onto a shinkansen to head back to Tokyo.