With over 2,000 temples and shrines the city is a great example
of Japanese architecture and plenty of time should be dedicated to
exploring these different sites. We can arrange a guided tour which
will really bring the history and culture of the temples to life,
but if you prefer to explore independently then some of the
must-sees are Kinkaku-ji, whose gold plated exterior overlooks a
large, tree lined pond, and the Fushimi Inari shrine, which is
reached via snaking avenues of bright red torii gates.
Kyoto is also the home of the geisha and around 200 geiko
(mature geishas) and 100 maiko (apprentice geisha) still live and
practice in the city. A really unique Japanese phenomenon, spotting
the painted white face of a geisha is a memorable experience, for
the best chance, head to the Gion area where the geishas live.
As opposed to the skyscrapers, busy streets and big city
industries in Tokyo, the low rise buildings in Kyoto are
complemented by an array of lush gardens and a traditional arts and
crafts culture. Ornate tea shops and traditional paper factories
are found nestled between the traditional townhouses.
Cuisine also plays a big part in shaping a Kyoto stay, though
unlike the rest of the city's highlights, the food has moved with
the times. Michelin starred restaurants, cool cocktail bars and
sushi spots in food halls now serve up fresh and flavourful
Japanese cuisine with a contemporary twist, and to wash it down,
there are abundant traditional sake bars and breweries to choose