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The top 10 sightseeing spots in Kyoto Prefecture


With more than a thousand unique temples and countless sites of natural beauty, planning a short trip to Kyoto can be no easy task. Thankfully, there’s a Japanese travel website that’s made things easy with a top ten list of unmissable places in the region. If you’re looking for a way to escape the information overload and simply visit the best that Kyoto Prefecture has to offer, then this list–complied by native Japanese no less–might just be the list for you.

The following recommendations have been compiled by Chikyūtabi, a Japanese site that’s currently building up top 10 lists for destinations around the world. As a well-known tourist spot, their Kyoto selections and omissions might cause some discussion, but we think the list is a great guide to the area.

1. Kiyomizu-dera


Built halfway up a mountain, this Buddhist temple is famous for its large balcony, and an impressive complex that includes a three-streamed, wish-granting waterfall, and two stones that visitors navigate between, with eyes closed, for luck in love.

2. Kinkaku-ji (officially known as Rokuon-ji)


This building is impressive, not only for its gold-leaf gilding, but also for the unique architectural styles on each floor. The bottom level of the building is reminiscent of Heian period palaces, the second level is built in the style of a samurai residence, and the top level represents a Chinese Zen hall. It can get crowded, though, so try to get their early during the day!

3. Fushimi Inari Taisha


Starting at the base of Mount Inari, thousands of vermilion torī gates wind their way up the side of the mountain, in dedication to Inari, the god of rice. Merchants have long revered the god, and today, each gate is donated by a business wishing for good fortune.

4. Byōdō-in (Uji city)


This temple, a 30-minute drive south from Kyoto city, is so culturally revered that it appears on the Japanese 10 yen coin. The main hall is known as the Phoenix Hall because the shape of the building resembles a phoenix in flight.

5. Arashiyama


West of Kyoto City, Arashiyama is well known for its stunning bamboo grove. The dappled light and the sounds of the swaying bamboo make this a popular destination.

6. Kyoto Tower


Although hundreds of years younger than the other buildings on the list, Kyoto Tower is still very much a cultural symbol of the city. Underneath the 131-metre-tall tower, you’ll find a hotel, shops and a public bathhouse.

7. Ginkaku-ji (officially known as Jishō-ji)


Despite Ginkaku-ji meaning “silver temple” in Japanese, there’s no silver on the building itself. It’s said that the name came about after moonlight on the original lacquer of the building brought out a silvery hue. A much more peaceful spot that its golden brethren, Ginkaku-ji is definitely worth checking out.

8. Nijō Castle


Built originally as the Kyoto residence for a famous Shogun, visitors today can step inside the historic palace and walk through well-preserved buildings and extensive gardens. You’ll notice that, unlike many castles in Japan, Nijō has comparatively few gates and defensive features, owing to its peacetime construction.

9. Tō-ji


The five-storied pagoda on the grounds of the temple is the tallest wooden tower in Japan, and a popular symbol of Kyoto. Another site not to miss!

10. Tenryū-ji


This temple is one of the greatest Zen temples in the region. Although many of the temples have been reconstructed, the design of the temple garden remains unchanged after hundreds of years.

Source : en.rocketnews24.com

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