Going to Kyoto was already on my list of places that I wanted to see when I got to Japan. I always thought that Kyoto was the capital of Japan, but it was somewhat surprising to find out the capital moved to Tokyo during the Meji Restoration. Nonetheless, this city has so much rich history, and being here was truly awesome. The first place we went to on our trip was Kinkaku-ji, which is home to the Golden Pavilion. The pavilion was surrounded by a large pond that reflects the building in the water, it was truly an awesome sight.
The second place we visited was Nijo Castle, which was built by the Tokugawa shogunate. The most interesting part of this place was the palace on the castle grounds. Unfortunately, we weren’t allow to take pictures inside the palace, which was a shame because the inside of the building was interesting in terms of how it was designed. One interesting fact about the palace is that the floors were designed in such a way that every time you took a step, the floor would squeak. This was used as a defense mechanism to try and catch those that were trying to sneak in the palace.
Like Kinkaku-ji, Nijo Castle was filled with gardens that were equally beautiful. The only difference between the gardens of Kinkaku-ji and the ones on the castle grounds is that it’s almost like as if you were walking around a park.
The last place we visited in Kyoto was the Kiyomizu-dera shrine. I personally had somewhat of a love-hate experience with this particular site visit. The reason why I loved it is that the shrine was built on top of a hill, which gave you a great view of the city. The reason why this site visit wasn’t one of my favorites is for the fact that the shrine was built on top of a hill. Why would someone build a shrine near a mountain!
But one of the most awe-inspiring thing I’ve seen during this site visit was the massive graveyard on the temple grounds. It was truly an amazing sight to see this many tombstones in one place, I couldn’t imagine seeing this place at night. Kyoto is such an amazing city, but it sucks that I didn’t get to see Nintendo HQ since it was founded in Kyoto. Hopefully, I might get to see it when I come back one day.