Yesterday arriving at my hotel, yes another hotel it’s just the way it worked in Kyoto over this weekend, at midday I could not check in until 4pm so I thought I would see some off the main attractions Kyoto has to offer.
The first I saw was amazing and very convenient. Fushimi Inari Taishi was a few stops away from the central JR station and even better than that is was right next to the station when you arrive on Inari platform. This shrine is a great place to explore with over 1000 red gates known in Japanese as a Torii. Each one is donated by a person who feels Shinto has benefited them:
Torii were traditionally made from wood or stone, but today they can be also made of reinforced concrete, copper, stainless steel or other materials. They are usually either unpainted or painted vermilion with a black upper lintel. Inari shrines typically have many torii because those who have been successful in business often donate in gratitude a torii to Inari, kami of fertility and industry. Fushimi Inari-taisha in Kyoto has thousands of such torii, each bearing the donor’s name.
It was quite an experience looking around and walking through the gates.
From here I headed back to Kyoto and caught another train out of Kyoto Central to Saga-Arashiyama station to see the beautiful Bamboo walk. From the station this was a little more difficult to find and was 10 minute walk.
Back at the Kyoto train station I was struck by its amazing architecture and just how high it was. Leaving the station to book in to my hotel I noticed the Kyoto tower, which perhaps tomorrow I will ascend to look out over the city. It is also great reference point to navigate the city.