Way of Philosophy in Kyoto - Street Travelers - Travels - 2020

Path of Philosophy in Kyoto

Day 6: KYOTO - Way of Philosophy: Ginkakuji, Nanzen Ji, Chio In - Gion

And best of all, the price is about 1470 yen per medium suitcase ... This is another of the great inventions we have found in Japan!
Today, to not change much the usual route that we have taken these days in Kyoto, we go straight to the station area and stop at the Starbucks, where we make a full breakfast with cappuccino coffee, American coffee and two delicious hot cinnamon rolls for 1240 yen.
With the stomach already full of energy we go straight to the Kyoto station and we repeat the operation of each day, take out our 24-hour bus pass for 500 yen each. As we have already mentioned, the single ticket costs 220 yen so the pass is amortized with only 2.5 trips.
Today we have to take the bus number 100 and after queuing for less than 5 minutes, we ride and get going.

The first stop of the day and one of the most anticipated of this stay in Kyoto, he Kyoto Philosophy Path, but already on the bus, seeing that a day of scandal, very clear, we decided to stop in Heian Gunju for the second time, to visit the gardens that we have been told are spectacular and well known for the movie Lost in Translation.
On the bus, when you have a pass you just have to pass it through the machine at the front door the first time for the date to be stamped. After this, every time you get off, you don't have to put it on the machine, just show it to the driver.
And so we go back to the Kyoto Heian Gunju Shrine for the second time, for free, and marvel at it and with the great day we can enjoy.

Heian Gunju Temple

Heian Gunju It is free, but the entrance to the gardens is not, so we pay 600 yen per person and enter one of the most beautiful gardens we have ever seen.

Heian Gunju Temple Gardens
Heian Gunju Temple

The first part at this time, in which the leaves of the trees have disappeared completely, is less striking but when we reach the “Lost in Translation” area, the vegetation changes completely and appears lush. It is spectacular!!

Views of the Heian Gunju Temple Gardens
Lost in Translation stage in the Heian Gunju Temple Gardens

We take this opportunity to pay our little tribute to the film and we have a good time crossing the stones from one side to the other.

Heian Gunju Temple Gardens
Heian Gunju Temple Gardens
Views of the Heian Gunju Temple Gardens

And as an anecdote, we are lucky to be able to see an improvised photography set, where they are making a report to a model.
Impressive as they are fixing the kimono every few seconds so that the photos look untouched.

Model in the Heian Gunju Temple Gardens
Model in the Heian Gunju Temple Gardens

The extensive Heian Gunju's garden, has a large pond and a bridge of Chinese inspiration, which aims to represent the typical garden of the Heian period.

Heian Gunju Temple Gardens
Images of the Heian Gunju Temple Gardens
Heian Gunju Temple Gardens
Resting for a while in the Heian Gunju Temple Gardens

We leave the Heian Gunju gardens about 10 in the morning and we return directly to the bus stop 100 to take us to the area where we start the Kyoto Philosophy Path.

Entrance area of ​​the Philosophy Path in Kyoto

Just start the Way of Philosophy In Kyoto we realized that the environment we expected and that we had seen in countless photos, since the cherry trees were without leaves, we would not have it, although regardless of this, it is still an area of ​​the Kyoto precious. It is also part of nature, so we are ready to enjoy it to the fullest.

Path of Philosophy in Kyoto

Although one thing does not remove the other and as we move forward, we are already thinking that the day we return to it Japan We will do it in spring.

Path of Philosophy in Kyoto

The first place where we deviate and make the first stop is at Ginkaku-ji where we pay 500 yen per person to enter.
Just after entering the entrance, we remain with our mouths open. Is awesome!!

Ginkaku-ji on the Way of Philosophy in Kyoto

Ginkaku-ji It is one of the most interesting points of Kyoto. In 1482, the sogún Ashikaga Yoshimasa built a country house here to retire with dignity from the chaos of the civil war.
The name of the house is translated by "silver pavilion", but the sogún's ambition to line the silver building never came true.


Several walkways run through the gardens of Ginkakuji, from which you can see meticulously raked sand cones, tall pines and a pond.

Ginkaku-ji Gardens on the Way of Philosophy in Kyoto

After Yoshimasa's death, the house became a temple.


Ginkakuji It has one of the most beautiful gardens we have ever seen.

Ginkaku-ji Gardens

We know that we always say the same, but it is that everyone we visit, we like it better than the previous one and it definitely has nothing to do with the order of the visits we are doing. It is simply that the things we see are so spectacular that they cannot be compared with each other and they are all incredible.

Views of the city from the road that climbs the slope of Ginkaku-ji
Detail of a tree cut that received radiation from the Hiroshima bomb. Ginkaku-ji

The road that leads back from Ginkakuji to the Way of Philosophy It is full of souvenir shops where this time we contain ourselves and decide that we will not stop, since they seem to us, from the outside, less original than those we have been seeing in other areas of Kyoto.
In this part of Way of Philosophy, we took the opportunity to buy a potato skewer and recharge energy for 200 yen.

“Technical” stop on the Way of Philosophy
Loading energies on the Philosophy Path in Kyoto

We continue our walk through the Way of Philosophy and seeing that it is almost 12 in the morning, we choose not to stop in intermediate temples ...

Road of Philosophy in Kyoto

It is never wrong to leave things to see to have more reasons to dream of coming back 😉

Details that remind us of last fall ... Philosophy Road in Kyoto

But before the end of Way of Philosophy, we stopped at Nanzen-ji Temple.

Nazen-ji Temple on the Way of Philosophy in Kyoto

He Nanzen-ji Temple It has an extensive enclosure and multiple minor temples.
At the beginning it was the retirement home of Emperor Kameyama but after his death, in 1291, it began to be used as a Zen Temple.

Nazen-ji Temple on the Way of Philosophy in Kyoto

And here we go again to make use of one of the most used words in this travel diary. Awesome.

Nazen-ji Temple

The Nanzen-ji Temple offers spectacular views.

Red brick aqueduct in Nazen-ji Temple
Nazen-ji Temple

From the Nanzen-ji Temple we are 1 kilometer from the famous Chion-in Temple, so we decided to take a last sprint and get there before eating.
We arrived shortly before 1 noon and as soon as we arrived we saw the famous stairs of the movie The Last Samurai.

Famous stairs in the movie The Last Samurai. Chion-in

We climb the stairs, not without some tiredness, because the steps are quite high and the big surprise is not that we are not charged for visiting it or that the Main Temple is being restored.


He Chion-in Temple It was built in 1234 in the enclave where a famous monk, spread his teachings until he died after a long fast.
Today it is still the headquarters of the Jodo Buddhist school, founded by Honen and a place where the activity is busy.


The main surprise we get when we start to see a lot of movement and some musical sounds are heard in the background.
When we realize, we see that an important event is taking place in the Chion-in Temple and we will be lucky to see it!


After taking off our boots, we are sitting for more than 30 minutes, simply enjoying what we have around us and the luck we have to be here.


When we look at the clock again, it's a little after 2 p.m., so we continue on our way, passing just in front of Yasaka Shrine and take the opportunity to visit la

Chion-in surroundings
Chion-in surroundings

And now yes, we are going to eat that our stomach is already asking for fuel to continue with the day.
We go to the area of ​​Pontocho and after traveling the street up and down a couple of times, we see that everything opens after 5 and those that open in the morning only do so until 2 ... so at this time we have Arrived, they are already closed and there is nothing to do.

Images that can be seen in Kyoto
Pontocho surroundings

Being almost starving, so we decided to enter the first of Pontocho Street, which has incredible views and how could it be otherwise, is something more expensive than usual.

Pontocho views

They accommodate us at a table overlooking the river and after looking at the menu up-down, down-up and even from side to side, we ordered two dishes without knowing very well what they are and this is the result: a plate of rice with a fish on top and another with the same, although a little broader, because it includes a couple of pieces of tempura, quite fair by the way and some pickles.

Eating in Pontocho

And all for the modest price of 3990 yen !! It is going to be that today we have played with Japanese gastronomy.
At least we go out on a stomach full of rice ... that something is something and we will have to look for the positive part.
After this technical stop to eat, we take a look at the guide and seeing that we are 400 meters from Nishiki we go straight to see the environment they say is the Kyoto's most famous market.

Nishiki Road
Nishiki Road

It is parallel to the shopping street and as soon as we enter we begin to see and feel food, smells and increasingly unimaginable colors.


Nishiki It is in the heart of Kyoto and the amount of food on display is surprising.

Food stalls in Nishiki
Octopus Skewers in Nishiki

A few minutes ago we were a little fed up with rice and we would have given anything to find another restaurant, but now, we are not going to lie and seeing the amount of things we are seeing and we do not know what they are and neither does the look they have attracts our attention , any feelings of hunger we had had were taken away.
When it's almost 5 in the afternoon, before going to Gion, where we intend to return for a walk at sunset, we make a technical stop for coffee and a cappuccino for 530 yen.
Here, in most bars and restaurants, they quit smoking. Something curious when in contrast, in the street, such as next to the station, in the street, we see a covered space for smokers.
With the stomach already warm and past and at 17.30 in the afternoon, we make our way to Gion, to enjoy its streets for the second time with more tranquility.

Enjoying the streets of Gion at dusk
Gion at dusk

We started taking a walk and getting lost in the streets as we did the first day and we have the great luck, after a couple of laps, to cross two maikos.

Maikos in the streets of Gion at dusk
Maikos in the streets of Gion at dusk

One of them has to shelter in an alley, to avoid the hustle and among all the tourists that are there, we surround it and for a moment, it seems even that we corner it.
At that time it tastes bad and really, I would have turned away, but the desire to take a souvenir photo has been stronger so I don't think much and press the shutter several times.

Maiko in the streets of Gion
Maiko in the streets of Gion

I have to admit that he has gained my selfish feeling and I am not proud of it, but that is how I acted and I cannot deny it ...

Maiko in the streets of Gion
Maiko in Gion

After this somewhat fleeting encounter, although it has lasted about 10 minutes in which apart from the photos we have been able to “enjoy” the presence of a maiko, it is almost 7 in the afternoon and having been today's food a bit insignificant, we decided that it is time to go to dinner and rest that we have a full day today.
But before and on the way to our dinner, we meet again with another maiko. No doubt today is our lucky day.

Another Maiko in the streets of Gion

And we end up in the restaurant in Kyoto Donguri, where we ordered some gyozas, a udon and an Italian okonomiyaki for 2131 yen.

Restaurant in Kyoto. Enjoying Japanese cuisine!
Restaurant in Kyoto. Making our okonomiyaki.

Bufffff .... what about dinner. Unbeatable All spectacular!

Restaurant in Kyoto. Enjoying Japanese cuisine.

It's after 9 p.m. when we just had dinner and we're busted, so we're going to our hotel in Kyoto, Citadines Kyoto Karasuma-Gojo, before going through 7Eleven to make our usual last minute purchases.
Today we are ground, but at the same time we are looking forward to tomorrow to continue our tour of Kyoto.
Now it's time to dream ...

Nazen-ji Temple