Our next day together in Kyoto! I took two days off from work. Therefore, it was already our last full day together in Kyoto. This day, I wanted to show my family my favourite area here in Kyoto. I love Arashiyama, Fushimi Inari and many other places. But if I need to choose just one place, I would probably go for the Higashiyama district with Kiyomizudera temple.
We started again at 7:30 am, because you it is just much nicer in the morning. Furthermore, you have so much more time to use the day completely. We decided to walk all the way to Kiyomizudera temple. In my opinion that’s how you experience the area and the whole atmosphere the best. First, we walked across the bridge, along the Kamogawa and through Gion until we reached the Higashiyama district. I guess it took us around 45 to 50 minutes.
On the way I showed my mum and my sister some shrines, little streets and obviously the famous picture spot with the beautiful Pagoda. It is definitely worth to come here early in the morning to avoid the crowd of people.
We headed straight to Kiyomizudera temple. The shops were still closed anyway. At the entrance of the main temple some students came to us to ask us a few questions. The same happened to me in Hiroshima. They want to practice a little bit their English with foreigners. On the one hand, it is really nice to see that they are brave enough to speak with tourists and that they are willing to improve their English. On the other hand, it is unbelievable to see how difficult it is for them to understand and speak English. In Europe, it is usual to learn English pretty early in school. Here, the 13-14 years old students are just starting to learn how to ask, “Where are you from?” or “What’s your name?”. That’s quite shocking!
Anyway, it was cute that they spoke to us. After a few pictures we went inside the temple. The area was as beautiful as I had it in mind. Definitely one of the best temples to see in Kyoto. We were really lucky with the weather as well. It supposed to rain the whole day. But so far, we stayed dry!
All the shops in Higashiyama were open when we headed back from the temple visit. We went inside a few traditional sweets and souvenir shops. There is so much new to discover. In every shop you will find something you haven’t seen before. If searching for presents to bring home, that’s a nice place to find where you will definitely find some nice souvenirs.
Of course, I needed to show my sister the Japanese-style Starbucks! That’s something you can’t find somewhere else in the world. We went inside, found a comfortable seat on the tatami floor and relaxed with our drinks for a while. Afterwards we wandered around Higashiyama and headed back to Gion.
In Gion, we made a stop at Yasaka Shrine and Miyajima Park. I already forgot how many times I’ve visited this place. 6, 7, perhaps 8 times? I really can’t remember. But it is always nice to come here, even though there are so many tourists around.
From Yasaka Shrine we walked across the bridge to Nishiki market, a must see in Kyoto and very conveniently located. I was already used to all the foods they are selling here, but for my family it was crazy to see what Japan has to offer. Kobe beef, Meat sushi, Octopus with quail egg, Oysters, Pickles, Sashimi, Unagi, Yakitori, Takoyaki, Matcha sweets, Black sesame buns or ice cream, ricecake, eggrolls, Kyukatsu, lots of seafood and many more.
But for our real lunch we decided to go to a Korean style restaurant, which a friend from work recommended for me! The restaurant looked amazing and so special from inside. It was like a different world! The food was amazing as well! I think I like Korean food even more than Japanese food, just because it is more seasoned, spicy, fresh and contains more vegetables. We ordered Bimbimbap and a Korean pancake/ rice cake for dessert. The presentation, the location, the price, the service and especially the food were amazing! I loved it and probably will come back again.
After having lunch, we went back to the hotel, where we just relaxed a bit. For dinner I have planned to eat Soba with my mum and my sister. But we didn’t really want to eat noodles. Therefore, we decided spontaneously to try a Thai restaurant nearby.
Thai cuisine is definitely my favourite cuisine on earth! I can’t explain how much I miss Thailand and the food! If you don’t like eating spicy it is probably not very suitable for you, but I just love it. I don’t even know why I didn’t have the idea earlier, to eat Thai food in Kyoto. I searched for the closest restaurant and it was delicious. We ordered Green Curry, Papaya salad, fried rice, spring rolls and so on. An easy, affordable, comforting meal! That’s what we needed! The atmosphere, the music and the food brought me back to Thailand. I wished I would be back there right now!
It was already late when we finished. Therefore, I went straight back to my apartment. The next day I needed to wake up early for work again. Yay!