Day 02: Kyoto - Arashiyama (Sep 2017)

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September 17th 2017
Published: October 15th 2017
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Sunday, 17th September 2017

Himeji >> Kyoto (130.7km, 43 mins, 5,480 Yen)

My afternoon itinerary involved a brief stopover at the former imperial capital of Kyoto located halfway between Himeji and Nagoya. Visiting Kyoto was a last minute decision, firmed up a few days before my trip to Japan. Since I was already holding on to the Japan Rail Pass, it made sense to cover a bit more ground as time was on my side. After 43 minutes on the train from Himeji, I arrived at Kyoto Station at a good time (12.57pm). The weather was perfect this afternoon with some light breeze that cooled the temperatures a bit.

From the massive Kyoto Station, I found my way to Arashiyama (Saga Arashiyama Station) via the JR Sagano Line. Arashiyama is an area around the western outskirts of Kyoto where the Bamboo Groves are located (15 minutes walk from the JR Station, free admission). Since this is a major tourist hotspot, the tranquillity and peace that is normally associated with bamboos swaying under the breeze is virtually unheard of at Arashiyama. Nevertheless, the Bamboo Groves still made a nice afternoon stroll as it is well-shaded from the sun.

As I was still early after my visit at the Bamboo Groves, I decided to board the Sagano Romantic Train that would bring me across rivers and gorges of the Kyoto countryside. The 25-minute sight-seeing journey set me back 620 yen but it was worth the money. After alighting at the terminal station, I headed towards the JR Torokko Kameoka Station for my trip back to Kyoto. Along the way, I was thrilled that I was walking alongside with the rice fields. Never in my life had I been so near to those fields. Coming from an urban environment, this was certainly an awesome afternoon for me to remember!

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