Day 5 in Kyoto - Temple Hopping
Kyoto Travel Blog› entry 6 of 8 › view all entries
We ate pastries for breakfast that we bought the night before from a bakery close to Gion.After breakfast, we walked about ten blocks to the first temple on the itinerary, Sanjusangendo Temple. Dang, what a long walk!!! Ten blocks on the map doesn't look too far! haha Good thing it was a little overcast.
When we reached the end of the temple tour, we ended up in the souvenir and fortunes section. I bought a fortune and it turned out it was a good prosperous fortune!! I can't even remember what it said exactly, but something about good home, good marriage, good travel (Japan!!), etc.
Next, we walked to Kiyomizudera. Mental note: things look a lot closer than they really on are the map! We got lost since the streets aren't really labeled, but another friendly local approached us as she saw us boring holes in our Kyoto map. haha Kiyomizudera was actually a candidate for the New 7 Wonders of the World. The main hall is built over a cliff and has a great view of Kyoto.
We continued our temple hopping and stopped by Maruyama park to rest a little and moved on to Chionin. The guide books did not lie when it said to take your time and exalt in the beautiful temples and grounds. Chionin was soooo huge and we were already running out of time. We walked through the main gate and as soon as we saw a steep flight of steps leading to the vast, expansive temple grounds. We looked at each other and were like OMG, this is going to be a lot to cover! We might as well stop now! lol how sad!!!! We just did not have enough time to cover the grounds!! Most of the temples close at 5 or 6 pm and we still had a long way to go!
It was already 3pm and we still hadn't eaten lunch!! We walked around hoping to find some place to eat.
After our late lunch, we headed to Kyoto Handicraft Center. This is another nice souvenir shopping store, but a little more expensive than other shops we've stopped at. They have paper goods (stationary), figures, dolls, swords, yukata, etc. We saw an advertisement for a geisha performance, tea ceremony, play, etc. at Gion Corner on the wall so we decided to attend for that night. No luck seeing a geisha, so we figured this was the best way to see one! hehe
Our last temple stop for the day was at Ginkakuji - temple of the Silver Pavilion.
After the temple, we had about an hour til the performance at Gion Center was to start. We headed back towards Higashioji St. in search of something to do before the show started. We stopped at Noen coffee shop for some coffee and cake. We ended up having a table next to a cheesey, lovey dovey couple in their 40s laughing over some book about relationships & Taoism(?)! Oh please!
Anyway, the performance was cool. It consisted of a tea ceremony, koto music, ikebana, gagaku (court music), kyogen (ancient comic play), Kyomai (kyoto style dance), and bunraku (puppet play). Each performance was no longer than 10 min. but his is a great way to experience Japanese entertainment.