My sister was visiting last December and we wanted to go Osaka for USJ, because, Hogwarts!!! (see here for my previous trip to USJ with the hubs) Although it was a short trip, I thought that since we were traveling all the way there, I tried to make the most of it and fashioned a little “Experience Kansai” itinerary for her.
Of the 5 days we spent in Kansai, 2 days were in Osaka, 1 in Nara, and 2 in Kyoto. In this post, I’ll be sharing our Kyoto itinerary. Links to individual posts will be added as they are written :)
9am: Left Osaka for Kyoto
10am: Arrived at kimono rental place
[see this post on where to rent kimonos in Kyoto]
11am: Dressed in kimonos and headed towards Kiyomizudera
12.45pm: Arrived at Kiyomizudera (after lots of pictures enroute)
1.30pm: Left Kiyomizudera and wandered through the traditional streets of Ichinenzaka and Ninenzaka
You must try the Kyoto snack Yatsuhashi 八つ橋! It’s my favorite! It’s a thin mochi-like skin with filling in the centre and comes in a wide variety of flavors :)
Also try nama yuba aka soy bean milk skin. Another favorite of mine!
4pm: Headed for bus stop to take a bus towards Kyoto station
5pm: Start of the tea ceremony
5.45pm: End of the tea ceremony; explored in and around Kyoto station
7pm: Returned kimonos and headed for dinner venue
8.10pm: Arrived at Kichi-kichi (the internet-famous omurice restaurant)
9.30pm: Checked in at 9hours
10am: Checked out (and left our luggage there)
11.30am: Arrived at Fushimi Inari Shrine, the place of the thousand torii (although there are technically more than a thousand here)
1pm: Left for Arashimaya
1.45pm: Arrived at Saga-Arashimaya station
2pm: Arrived at Arashimaya Bamboo Grove
2.20pm: Walked towards Togetsu Bridge (渡月橋)
3.20pm: Left from Hankyu Arashimaya station for hotel
And that was our Kyoto itinerary! (although it’s more like 1.5 days than 2 days since the rest of day two was unexciting events like going back to the hotel before rushing to the airport).
Yes, 2 days in Kyoto is severely lacking because there are so many other nice places we didn’t get to visit, but working with what we have, I tried to pick places and things to do based on our interests, and without making it too rushed and hectic. Hopefully this will provide some insight when you are planning your own Kyoto itinerary! I would say at least 5 days in Kyoto would be more comfortable to explore the many attractions that the city offers.
Although this was my 4th time to Kyoto, this was the first time I really felt charmed by Kyoto. Perhaps it’s largely attributed to my discovery of Arashimaya, the place I was most taken with. I really wished I had more time there! Arashimaya is definitely a place that I want to, no, make that will visit again! This time, I will make sure to have ample time there :)