On Sunday morning, our fourth day, we boarded the high speed bullet train and rode it to Kyoto, where we would spend our next approximately three days. Arriving at Kyoto station, we checked our bags at the Kyoto Grandvia Hotel, attached to the station, and met our car and driver for a trip down to Nara, to see a couple temples, and to feed the deer who have become human acclimated to the point that their behavior is much like dogs. They beg for food and if they know you have any of the wafers they sell for you to feed them, they will hound you until you feed them.
The weather in Kyoto for the time we were there was a beautiful, balmy 98 degrees, with humidity right around the same number. We felt like we were going to melt.
After an afternoon visiting two impressive Temples, in Nara, we returned to Kyoto, where we visited a third Temple.
Of all the temples we visited, unfortunately, I cannon remember the name of this one. I tend to revert back to my “landscape shooter” prejudices when at these kinds of scenes, and find it frustrating not to be able get the pristine shot with no people in it. This one was a particular challenge, as we were there near closing and there were hundreds of people there. We had to park off site and hike up a narrow street, and as you can see, there was the proverbial “sea of humanity” at this location. Still, I was able to get some isolation shots.
This location was also one of the only two times on the trip that I regretted bringing the big gun and my 70-200 lens, as there was a very nice shot of one of the buildings tucked up into the hills which begged for a telephoto lens.
By the time we were finished with this temple, we were ready to check in to our rooms, shower, and find some food. Kyoto was where I got my indoctrination in Japanese noodle styles. We (sadly) did not try every different style of noodle offered in Japan, but I was interested to learn that it was not unusual for a restaurant to specialize in just one particular style. That night we went to a Soba Noodle restaurant. Not only was the meal filling and delicious, but I learned how to eat noodles with Chopsticks.