28 December 2013

Kyoto day 8

Friday 22nd November

I caught the bus to Ninnaji Temple, the longest bus journey I'd made so far. I went round the palace. The gardens were very beautiful and the place was so peaceful. The autumn colours were getting stronger by the day, and even seemed to be intensifying over the course of one day.

I then walked to Ryoanji Temple, which was as busy as I expected it to be, so visiting the rock garden was not a very peaceful experience. I enjoyed photographing the famous water basin, as I'd developed a bit of an obsession with photographing these. There was lots more to see, including a large pond to walk round.

Toji-in was a total contrast in that it was so very quiet. It had a spot where I sat and observed a gravel garden and there was not a soul to be seen - very different from at Ryoanji! The place was quite difficult to find, but I'm glad I made the effort.

In the evening my friend Miki met me at the hotel and we took a taxi to Kodaiji Temple. We arrived there to find a giant queue, but we joined it and it moved along quite quickly. The autumn leaves were lit up, and there were coloured lights on the gravel garden. There was a pond with perfect reflections in it, and a bamboo forest.

We went on to Entoku-in Temple, which was much more peaceful, then we went along Ishibei-koji and back towards Shijo Street. As we passed Hanami-koji we decided to have a quick look, and immediately spotted a geiko, and a few minutes later saw another.

We went to Issen Yoshoku and had okonomiyaki which is a pancake filled with all sorts of delicious things. It was a really fun place to eat, with mannequins dressed in kimono at each table.

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