This marks the second time i’ve been to the humble city of Kyoto. It’s a place that holds a big spot in my heart, as the first time I visited was during my Honeymoon. Although it was once the capital city of Japan it’s very different to the other major cities like Tokyo and Osaka that are known to be very packed and busy. The main differences can be seen in its pride in preserving the traditional that translates throughout all of it’s 11 wards. Streets are clad with old houses and in between those are various mini shrines and temples, that gives it a great mystical atmosphere that sets it apart from other cities. And its grand temple structures are not limited to a small areas but places like Fushimi Inari are built into the sides of mountains. This one in particular takes about an hour to reach the utmost peak of the shrine, walking through over 12,000 tori gates, passing waterfalls, mini shrines and little tea houses situated along the route. We arrived here around 5:00am so we could scale it before sunrise – and what an experience passing through these eery structures in the dark with nothing but fireflies around. If you get here anytime past 8:30am you’ll be met with waves of tourists that will not stop coming till it becomes dark again, so if you do decide to visit – make sure you’re up early!
And if you’re a fan of touristy spots then they come a plenty in Kyoto. Around every corner is an Instagram photo waiting to be taken. We stayed just east of the centre of Kyoto city near the Kamo river and Kiyomizu Gojo station. This area is perfect for getting around with Kyoto’s major food and shopping district just a 10-minute walk away. Here you’ll find a lot of traditional dishes and street food in Nishiki Market, High-end shopping on Shijo-dori and perhaps you might even spot a real Geiko (Geisha) emerging from a riverside tea house in the infamous Gion Corner. I managed to capture a shot of a whole group of them tucked away in a back street. You can tell the real ones from the intricate paint details on their backs, their hand painted Kimonos and the expensive ornaments tucked into their flawlessly designed hairdos. The Gion area is one of the better examples of how