01 October 2015
During Silver Week, a holiday or break during the Fall Semester, four other friends and I went to Kyoto for 3 days. We took the bullet train or Shinkansen straight to Kyoto Station on a Sunday afternoon. Besides moving at a speed of about 200mph, the 2-hour Shinkansen ride was just another train ride.
Upon arriving and settling down in our micro apartment, we immediately ventured out into the beautiful city of Kyoto. Our first stop was Nishiki Market where we joined the hundreds of visitors in the seemingly never-ending walk-through of vendors.
There were so many kinds of shops! There sold all types of food, drinks, candy, toys, souvenirs, clothes, etc. I had to clutch my wallet so I wouldn’t buy everything.
After walking through and trying as may samples as possible in Nishiki Market, we found ourselves in Shin Kyogoku Shopping Arcade where I just had to buy at least one piece of clothing (aka a retro denim jacket ☺).
For dinner we went to a matcha café/ matcha restaurant where they specialized in everything matcha. I soon discovered that these cafes are very popular in Kyoto as we passed by many of them throughout the trip. I like to think that my love for matcha is eternal so going to more than three matcha cafes was a kind of lifestyle I could get used to.
The first day of our mini vacation in Kyoto ended with a calming stroll through Shijo Street and shopping district.
My favorite temple we visited, by far and with obvious reason, was the Golden Pavilion (or Kinkaku-ji). The top two floors of the building are covered in gold leaf.
Coming in at a close second would be the Fushimi Inari-Taisha shrine. The bright, deep, red-orange color of the walkthroughs is an image one can never forget. Beautiful is an understatement of how the shrine could be described.
While in Kyoto, we also visited the Bamboo Forest, Kiyomizu-dera Temple, and Arashiyama Mokney Park Iwatayama.
Besides the great attractions and beautiful sightseeing, we did a lot of unique and special food-tasting in Kyoto as well. Owariya is a 540-year-old soba restaurant that was simply divine. We managed to be second in line, which was a smart move because that line got very long very fast. We got our home-sick cravings filled at an American-style café and went to a famous ramen restaurant. Our bullet train get-away to Kyoto was definitely an experience I would not mind repeating again.
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<p>Hey there! I am Onyekachi Nwabueze and I am a Nigerian born and raised in San Francisco, California. I am a student at Occidental College studying Cognitive Science, Education, and Linguistics. I love love LOVE to dance, sing, learn, try new things, and paint my nails. My current career paths include varsity athlete, big sister, wanna-be professional dancer, and villainous chiller (one who chills like a villain).</p>