Today was our last day in Kyoto before heading to Osaka. We filled the day with visiting a few sites from our last trip as well as some new ones.
Resources Fushimi Inari Shrine:
This site is one we visited from our last trip to Japan, but we ran out of time to explore it all. This time we were determined to make it all the way to the top of Mt. Inari. It took several hours to walk the 2.5 mile trail which at some parts were fairly steep. The further up we went the fewer and fewer people there were, but at the base of the shrine it was extremely crowded. The walking trails are covered with over 10000 tori and the earliest is from 711 A.D. The tori are donated by japanese businesses for good fortune and prosperity. Throughout the trails, there are various sub-shrines and what seem to be graves. From my search on the internet there are various graves laid out over Mt. Inari and they look like this:
We walked and walked and finally reached a branching point in the path. We decided to head right as it appeared to go up the mountain and that was our ultimate goal. We came across a map and it showed we were on the right trail to hit the summit. We continued onward. After some time we figured we must be at least halfway to the top and we came to an apex with another map. This map showed we had barely begone the climb to the top. We took a steep staircase up and came to an area full of graves similar to the one pictured above. On the way up we saw this praying mantis:
At the top of the stairs and behind the graves was a trail that we walked down and no one else was there, and we came across a clearing in the trees and the view overlooked Kyoto:
We then followed the stairs back down and turned left down a new route marked as the way to the summit. It was a shaded and cool path in the shadow of the mountain, which was very welcomed due to all the climbing we had done and the climbing that lay ahead. The trail continued for a long while and eventually it started to climb up again. Here’s a view as we started to head back up:
After about another 30 – 40 minutes of following the trail we reached the very top. At the top was a larger shrine and as we began our descent this is what we saw:
The climb down was very quick and we traversed it effortlessly. We decided to stop at the base of the shrine to have some lunch from the street vendors and a dessert. We chose a mochi with chocolate filling and a strawberry on top:
We then walked back to the train station and went one stop north to Tofukuji.
Tofukuji is located about a 15 minute walk from Tofukuji Station. The walk there is along a narrow street with no sidewalks per se and with passing cabs and mopeds. We remembered the area well from our trip there two years ago. We reached the temple, which is a Zen temple built in 1236. Here is a picture from there:
The picture above doesn’t do this structure justice as it is extremely big and tall. We walked around the grounds for about 45 minutes or so before heading back to Kyoto Station which our next stop was accessible from the station itself, Kyoto Tower.
clarinex d 12 hour price Kyoto Tower:
Since we entered the tower from within the station I didn’t get a picture of it from the outside, but it’s needle-shaped with a UFO-like observation deck. The tower is 430 ft (131 m) tall and the observation deck is at 330 ft (100 m). Here are some pictures from inside the tower:
If you look carefully below the text “Kiyomizu-Dera” I marked in the picture above, you can see a tiny red tower. That is a pagoda from Kiyomizu-Dera which we visited yesterday.
We were even able to see Osaka way in the distance from the tower since the air was so clear today. Here’s one more picture of the tower and this time from the inside to show you what it looked like:
Once we had finished walking around the observation deck a few times we headed down to the station again, retrieved our backpacks from a coin locker where we stowed them earlier in the day so we didn’t have to carry them around all day. We then went to the Shinkansen platform to board our train to Shin-Osaka Station. Due to the train’s speed we reached the station in about 15 minutes. And if you remember I just mentioned you could see Osaka from Kyoto Tower way on the horizon. We cleared that distance quickly by the Shinkansen.
On the way to Shin-Osaka Station we watched the sun turn red and set behind the mountains. We then got off the train and walked to our hotel. Here’s a picture from the streets near our hotel in Osaka:
We rested a little while in our room since we had been walking or standing literally all day before heading out to dinner. We found a ramen restaurant and ordered a spicy ramen bowl each that was really good.
Tomorrow we have a full day exploring a lot of sites in Osaka.