Salt Neck?

The plan for the morning was to go to Fushimi Inari-taisha Shrine, known for the orange gates that line the path to the top of the mountain. It was only a few miles away so I decided to walk there. Headphones in, I had a nice walk there, still laughing about some of the fun had the night before. I reached the temple and began my ascent. The bottom was crowded with people trying to get pictures by the infamous orange gates. However, the higher I went (I started having flash backs to the stairs to the temple in Bali) the less crowded it became. The views of the city below were amazing and I was so impressed by the gates that led all the way up. I snuck off the path for a bit and it was so incredibly quiet. I sat and relaxed for a bit (I also wasn’t in the best hiking shape after last night) before heading back down.


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Zen and games.

I was happy to see a communal breakfast table as I had just spent 6 days solo in Tokyo and I was looking for some socializing in Kyoto. While a few people sitting there invited me to join them at Nora National Park, I was itching to go to Arashiyama today so I stuck with my plan. I took the train there in the AM, it was just a short 15 minute ride. The town was very cute and I enjoyed walking through it on the way to the first temple, Tenryu-ji. What I liked about this one was the garden area. It was very zen and beautiful even though it was just starting to turn green again. I walked the garden path and it did feel like a moment of meditation. From there I stopped at a cafe to have a little cup cake and matcha green tea.

Processed with VSCO with a4 preset

Processed with VSCO with a4 preset

Processed with VSCO with a4 preset

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To Kyoto at bullet speed.

I was very paranoid about missing the Bullet Train to Kyoto. My tickets were non-refundable so I didn’t want to risk being late. Therefore, I showed up 3 hours early ha. I was able to leave my big bag and a small shopping bag at my hostel which helped. It is possible to take luggage on these trains from what I read, but it’s a hassle. There isn’t a ton of room and there are a lot of stairs. Basically, you can do it but everyone what look at you annoyed. I’m sure that’s not the case when you know what you’re doing, but for a newbie I didn’t want to risk it. UPDATE: Having done it now, I totally could have brought my bag on. Actually, it would have been nice to have my other things, but at the same time it was nice not to have to lug it around. 

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