Monday, January 4, 2016

Arashiyama Bamboo Groves

Arashiyama Bamboo Forest
Tuesday morning in Kyoto. We woke up a little early today, because we are planning to visit one of the largest flea market in Kyoto, namely  (Kobo-san) in the temple courtyard  (To-ji). The market takes place all day on the 21st of each month throughout the year. Kobo-san is a form of tribute to a Shinto priest, (Kobo Daishi), which is placed at the To-ji temple by Emperor Saga in the year 823 AD. He died on March 21, so as to commemorate haul Kobo Daishi flea market held every 21. The number of sellers who participate can reach 2,000 merchants, of course, with buyers who did not lose much.

At first I was planning to go alone to hunt for souvenirs request my mother, but when I mentioned this to friends, they also want to participate. We start the journey from the hostel at 07.00. Kyoto city was still asleep because the streets are still deserted, only a few people who looked at the road. We walk to Kyoto Station, and a new look in the morning that the massive size of the station and looks magnificent. Much larger when compared to Gambir station, Manggarai or Jakarta Kota. From Kyoto Station, we use the local train Kintetsu purpose Yamatosaidaiji the ticket ¥ 150. Toji Station is located just 0.9 km from Kyoto Station, but to save time we boarded the train. Trains were also still quiet morning and we arrived at Toji Station at 07.30.

Toji Station
Out of the Toji Station is not difficult to locate Toji, follow the road to the right after exiting the station. It will be seen  (pagoda 5 levels). On the sidewalk in front of the temple, some traders are already preparing to open stall. But unlike traders in Indonesia, they are not to sell on the road and shut pedestrian. We then entered into the temple through the main door. Inside, traders are already quite a lot, but most are still preparing their stalls. We then split up to search for "treasure" hidden in this place.

For myself there are a few items I was looking for. The first is the statue of legendary creatures Japan, the Tanuki. The original form of this creature is described as a racoon who has the ability to transfer into animal or human form. He is associated with good luck kanji can be seen in figure 8 on a bottle of wine in his hand. Other luck associations that exist in Tanuki are:
  •     A hat to protect yourself from problems and bad weather
  •     Big eyes interpreted as concern for the environment and prudent decision making
  •     Sake bottle symbolizes the high moral standards
  •     Tail big as themselves and form a counterweight to the power of success obtained
  •     Big testes symbolizes wealth
  •     Securities symbolize the nature of the trust and confidence
  •     Large stomach is associated as the courage and calmness in decision-making
  •     Friendly smile
    Tanuki statue sold in stores in the area Arashiyama, but of course the price is expensive craft. For that I am looking at the flea market. Previously, I had time to research about the price, there is a US citizen who buy it at a price of ¥ 2,500. The price I make reference when looking for Tanuki statues.

    I trace the maze of Kobo-san slowly, because items sold here are very diverse and numerous, both antique and modern, fresh goods such as vegetables to everyday tools. I could find a seller who is one of the merchandise is Tanuki statues, when I asked the price is ¥ 4,000. If the Kobo-san is located in Southeast Asia, most likely I could bargain, but in Japan the culture of fixed price is not negotiable, I think the price is too expensive, besides Tanuki statues of his condition was not too special.

    I then went around again to the backyard of the temple. Here I find a seller with lots of choice of shapes and sizes Tanuki statues. When I asked the price (in Japanese), only ¥ 3,000, with a fairly large size and good manufacturing quality. I agree with the price and buy it directly. Another item I am looking for is Norin (a kind of fabric widely used by traditional Japanese restaurant in front of the entrance) orders a friend, but in Kobo-san price is very high, about ¥ 5,000-6,000. I decided to look for somewhere else.

    When the day wore it turns more and more traders who just arrived here and opened the stall is to start selling. I had looked behind the main part of the temple and looked very long row of sellers. Kobo-san was about to begin.

    Around 08.30, I'm looking for my friends, and found them near the entrance. They say half an hour looking for me to notify its findings. Ray find a dealer one of the items we are looking for, namely a suitcase. The vendors sell a variety of bags and one of them is a former large suitcases, which is offered for ¥ 700. We had been planning to buy a single large suitcase as a souvenir for the family and our colleagues that we will combine in order to save space and baggage charges.

    The first suitcase notified by Ray told me smaller, for ¥ 500, but we see no other larger suitcase and then asking the price. Because of differences in size quite substantially with little price difference, we decided to buy big after checking the condition of the outside in, and found only slight defects in strap shirt in it. If buying new, we crush the bag for a minimum of ¥ 15,000. This suitcase into our cheapest purchase record for Japan.

    Outside Kobo-san, we got interested in a stall that sells  (Yukata), traditional Japanese summer clothes. However, because no seller after we waited a few minutes, we went back to the hostel to check-out and prepare to get around Kyoto. We re-boarded the train Kintetsu Kyoto Line to Kyoto Station.

    Check-out process is running slow, because we have to tidy up the goods, bath and then left the bag in the locker room hostel. Afterwards we had breakfast at Sukiya before starting the journey today. Because it was already noon and saw Raku-bus line very long front of Kyoto Station, I decided to reverse our route, which last visited the place which should be visited first.

    We boarded the train at JR Sagano Line ticket at ¥ 230 to Saga Arashiyama station. The station is a gateway to the former Arashiyama is a pleasure Emperor in the Heian period (794 - 1192 AD). This area is famous for charming bamboo forest. When we arrived, the weather was cloudy this morning turned into the scorching heat with temperatures around 30ยบ C.

    Saga Arashiyama Station
    Exit the station, we could see into the station to see the tourist train Sagano. This train passes through the exotic with the rural scenery of Kyoto. Tickets ¥ 600 one way and takes about 25 minutes to the final destination Kameoka Station. The scenery is most flattering when Sakura flowers bloom in spring and autumn when the leaves turn red and yellow lit which makes the contrast with the surrounding circumstances. But we decided not to ride this train and chose to walk to the Arashiyama bamboo forest.

    The road to the bamboo forest is located next to Station Arashiyama Sagano. Indeed, there are signs to it, but it is written in kanji. Because it is not sure, we follow some people who look like tourists walking towards here. This method proved to be effective, although I had knowingly and misread the map. On the way into the bamboo forest, Adi had to buy ice cream flavors  (green tea) famous for ¥ 250. We had a short break here.

    After that we immediately walked to Arashiyama bamboo forest. Many visitors also enjoy the atmosphere here. In the area of ​​Arashiyama I found a rickshaw pulled by hand. However pedicab driver is not only serves as a means of transportation, but concurrent role as a tour guide. Their ministry is also quite good, visitors are usually two people were given a blanket to warm the body. Their rates are also pretty decent, ranging from ¥ 5,000 for 30 minutes. They pedicab driver who has the official name tag as identification. Usually they 'hang out' in front of the entrance to the tourist area. In Tokyo, they number more than I've found in Arashiyama.

    Finish of Arashiyama, we immediately went to our next destination, the Temple or the famous (Kinkakuji or Golden Pavilion). From Arashiyama we boarded bus number 11. I returned the wrong reference. My goal is stop Yamagoe Nakacho continued by bus to Kinkakuji-michi stop. Bus number 11 was not Yamagoe Nakacho goal, but it stems from the bus Yamagoe Nakacho.

    How to ride the bus in Japan differ from those in Indonesia, Malaysia or even Singapore. Here, passengers up from the back door and down the front door. When the ride, passengers must take a ticket from the machine available (unless already have a subscription card). This ticket bearing the number that indicates the class of the area stop departures. Further price indicator LED above the driver will change according to the distance traveled. There is no conductor to withdraw money, there is only a driver. To pay, in addition to the driver no coin machine as a place to pay.

    So what if I do not bring any change? It is already thought of a way out. There are dime exchanger machine, simply insert ¥ 1,000 bills into the machine, and coins will come out by itself. If you want to get off, put a dime in accordance with the distance along the paper taken when rising earlier in the machine. The driver will make sure the amount of money put in accordance with the distance. No need to hurry, the driver will wait for and assist passengers until the process is complete and will not scold if we do not know how to pay for the bus here.

    In addition, another interesting thing is the Kyoto City Bus One-Day Pass, which is an electronic ticket that allowed me and my friends to ride the bus for free in Kyoto all day, at a price of ¥ 500. Tickets can be purchased at vending machines in front of the central bus stop in front of Kyoto Station. Inn in Kyoto also many who sell electronic tickets, as I do is buy the ticket at the front desk Hostel Kyoto Hana. However, there are limitations in the zone where the pass can be used. If I use a bus outside the zone, then still have to pay, as I did for the bus to stop Nishioji Oike Arashiyama.

    In Nishioji Oike stop, we continue by bus No. 205 to Kinkaku-ji Michi. Since it was in the zone, we use the Kyoto City Bus One-Day Pass. To wear it the first time, enter the pass into the payment machine, located beside the driver. Later, the machine will print the date on the back pass. Take back pass already printed that date. If time riding the bus in the zone, just show pass along with the date when the driver behind the drop. So I do not need to enter a pass into the machine again. Back to bear in mind, riding the back door and down the front door.

    In Kinkaku-ji Michi is not difficult to find the location of Kinkaku-ji Temple, a lot of directions are available, and visitors in and out of the area on foot. We followed them and not how long it has arrived at the front entrance of the temple. The price of admission to the temple Kinkaku-ji is ¥ 500. The main feature of Kinkaku-ji is the Golden Pavilion, located in the middle of a lake surrounded by Japanese-style garden. Very beautiful and looks magnificent.

    When walking in the park, I found the scenery that captivates. Some of the girls visited Kinkaku-ji using yukata and geta sandals complete, hair in a bun with flowers as a sweetener such as women's fashion Japan in ancient times. They look elegant and beautiful that makes a contrast with other visitors that modern dress. Many visitors, especially foreign tourists, were asked to take pictures with them. They are friendly and usually happy to meet the demands of the tourists. Would be difficult to find girls in Indonesia stroll by using kebaya, for example, or other Indonesian traditional clothes to the tourist attractions. Perhaps because of climatic factors and practicality of traditional Indonesian clothing also more meaningful symbolic only used at special times.

    Once satisfied at Kinkaku-ji, we move on to the next destination, ie Philosophy These ("Philosopher's Walk") down the canal between  Temple (Ginkakuji) and Temple  (Nanzenji). From Kinkaku-ji Michi stop to the Higashi-Tennocho we boarded the bus No. 204. The long journey of about 50 minutes. I had overslept many times on the bus. There's an interesting thing when I ride this bus. At an intersection, the bus turned right, but stop halfway. Once I see it, it is a traffic light shows red, and green for pedestrians to cross. The streets were fairly empty that afternoon, there were only two elementary school children were crossing the road jokes regardless of the presence of the bus. The bus driver also waited patiently for the children until at pedestrian and the light turns green before proceeding. Wow, the way here the rule of law and respects the rights of pedestrians. If in Jakarta, the impatient driver would honk both children and violated the traffic lights.

    At 3 pm, we arrived at the stop Higashi-Tennocho. We immediately walked to the canal past the Sen-Oku Hakukokan Museum. This is a museum that contains the family art collection Sumitomo, the Japanese conglomerate. If you want equated with Indonesia, similar to House of Sampoerna in Surabaya. Not far from the museum, we were on the canal side and walked toward Kyoto Ginkaku-ji temple. Actually, lots of cherry trees at the edge of the canal, but because it was at the peak of the spring, re-green foliage color, not pink like the beginning of spring. However, remains a pleasant walking leisurely afternoon, first we ran into some girl who walks by the canal using a yukata.

    30 minutes later we arrived at the entrance area of ​​Ginkaku-ji. However, we decided not to go in there, because besides having to pay extra, ¥ 500, this temple also actually 'unfinished'. Ginkaku-ji temple, famous for its silver pavilion. Unfortunately when the development process, they lack the money to coat the walls of the pavilion with silver. However, the manager retains the name of the silver pavilion. Together with the Golden Pavilion Kinkaku-ji temple, the silver pavilion temple Ginkaku-ji is a prime tourist spot in Kyoto. I had bought matcha ice cream here, but the price is more expensive than the ¥ 50 when Adi bought in Arashiyama area.

    At 15:40, we plan to go back to the hostel and end the trip in Kyoto. We rode Raku-bus No. 100 to the Kyoto Station. Raku-bus is a bus route in Kyoto serving routes to popular tourist destinations in Kyoto. There are three routes, namely No. 100 route Station Kyoto - Ginkaku-ji. Bus No. 101 route Kyoto Station - Kinkaku-ji, and Bus No. 102 with the aim of Kinkaku-ji - Ginkaku-ji. When on the road, Bus No. 100 past the stop Gion, famous Geisha district. My friend asked me to get off at this stop and look around this area. I immediately said yes and we were soon off at the stop in front of Yasaka-jinja, a Shinto shrine used to be called as Gion-jinja.

    Gion is located in Higashiyama area. At least there are some places of interest in the region, namely the Kiyomizu-dera Temple, a Buddhist temple that is part of the Historical Monuments of Ancient Kyoto and ordained as a world cultural heritage site (UNESCO World Heritage Site). Kiyomizudera founded in the early Heian period, precisely the year 798. But the building which currently stands was built in 1633 after the restoration by the time shogun, Tokugawa Iemitsu. Interestingly, not a single nail is used during the construction of this temple. Here are Temple Jishu-jinja, which is dedicated to Okuninushino-Mikoto, the god of love and marriage of the nation of Japan. There are also two "stone of love" apart a distance of 18 meters from each other.

    Other places of interest are Gion Corner and Pontocho, in the west area of ​​Higashiyama. In the past, many Maiko practice in this area to become a Geisha. We were just driving around in the Yasaka-jinja, then to Maruyama Park, a green open space with stunning scenery. If Sakura flowers are blooming or when the autumn, the landscape more interesting. After that we Gion Corner. My friend hoping to catch a glimpse Maiko. Unfortunately, it did not materialize. When we pass in this area, the time shows at 17:00, opening new restaurants and bars. Maybe if we wait a while longer, they will appear. As healers curiosity, many girls wearing yukata stroll in the region.

    Nearly an hour in Higashiyama. After that we decided to have dinner at the Sukiya near the hostel after Raku-ride bus No. 100 to the Kyoto Station. In this Sukiya restaurant, I again find it interesting. Saleswoman here using uniform when it works, and if she is a woman, the hair should bun and wearing a cap. 18.00 Apparently when we arrived is the time to change shifts. One female salesperson who had served during terminate its work and preparing to go home.

    For that he went into a small room next to me and my friends eat. I think he just wanted to pick up groceries less. I was surprised when it came out it has changed with the latest fashion. Shoulder-length hair dyed blonde and overlaid hat cap is the trend among young people. He was wearing a jeans jacket combined with a mini skirt with black stockings. Do not forget to maximize his performance stilleto heel shoes he wears. The salesperson that when using a uniform already look beautiful, become more interesting and attractive.

    If you do not see it working in the restaurant, abstruse for someone to know where he works. Unlike in Indonesia, usually when an employee in uniform, then that person will just chimed in uniform with a jacket when home. But not here. They leave uniform in the office and replace with the desired clothing. After this experience, I do not judge a woman only negative of the way dressed. If he is comfortable with the clothes he was wearing, I gladly honor.

    Finished eating, we shopped at Yodobashi mall, a shopping center is not far from our hostel. I bring a lot of clothes that do not plan to buy clothing. Incidentally there Uniqlo branches here. While Ray around in the store as the center Yodobashi Camera in Japan and Adi seek Puma shoes. Because parted and promised to meet again in the hostel at 20:30.

    In the allotted time, we met again. Ray buy a charger for the camera. While Adi home empty-handed, because he saves his money to shop in Tokyo. I myself, satisfied with a set of clothes. We then took the bag and suitcase that morning deposited in the locker room while saying thank you for the good service and generosity receptionist who allowed us entrust all day bag in a locker room. At 21:00, we rushed to the Kyoto Station which is also a "bus terminal" inter-city inter-prefecture in the evening. Tonight we are going to Tokyo using Willer Express bus.

    Willer Express Bus
    Willer Express bus is a cheap alternative means of transport to travel long distances between cities in Japan. Another alternative that can be used is using Shinkansen trains are quite expensive, can reach ¥ 13,000, but it only takes 2 hours. Or by plane. But if we choose the mode of transport aircraft, we must return to Kansai International Airport, then fly to Haneda Airport or Narita International Airport, before continuing by train to the city center. The options are either expensive, also take longer than the train. Both of the above alternatives also require us to pay extra for lodging one night again.

    Travel routes Kyoto - Tokyo by bus Willer Express for ¥ 4,500 per person takes 7 hours to cover a distance of 461 km, equivalent to the distance from Jakarta - Yogyakarta. Due to the excellent motorway network, travel times faster than the travel time on the island of Java. Those advantages, besides cheap also we could sleep the whole way because the bus leaves at midnight and arrived the next day. We save the cost of lodging one night.

    We are required to check in at the counter Willer Express to the west of Kyoto Station at 23:25. We were given a map and instructions when booking through the Internet. We got there at 22:00. Looks several staff Willer Express is preparing a check-in counter and some passengers began arriving waited hours of departure. This counter is actually a temporary counter made from a folding table. Staff use casual clothes and wearing a pink jacket uniform identity. By not opening the permanent booth, the company has made efficiency because they only served a few hours when the bus departure at midnight.

    As we waited for the bus counters destination Tokyo opened, I again made dumbfounded. An inter-city buses inter-prefectural entrance to the parking area of ​​Kyoto Station. Which makes me amazed is when he saw a woman driver, the conductor of a middle-aged man. Indeed, it is common in Jakarta found helmsman Transjakarta women. But I never found a woman driving the night bus inter-city inter-province in Indonesia with a male conductor. If in Indonesia crowded celebrated emancipation movement, in Japan it has long done. It's nearly midnight in Kyoto and this town will not cease to make me stunned.

    At 23.00, I do check in by showing proof of booking via the Internet. 15 minutes later, the bus Willer Express 252 goals Tokyo arrived and we soon got into after entrust suitcase in the trunk and showed our names on the manifest that is held by the driver. The interior is quite comfortable buses with seats that can be propped up and the curtains were always closed. At 23:25, the bus leaves Kyoto to Tokyo Station. I will miss Kyoto and Kansai area.

    Kofukuji and Todaiji Temple

    The next morning, we woke up at 08.00, immediately pack up and check out of the hotel to go to the next town, Nara. Previously we have breakfast at Sukiya near the hotel. Monday did not look busy as weekdays in Jakarta, just seemed a few people stopped by for breakfast on the way to their office. I know it from the clothes they wear. Frenzied atmosphere overnight has not looked as bars and restaurants in the area is still closed. Just seems some people passing to their destinations each.

    While eating, I explained to my friends about our travel plans today. Nara city, located 42 km south of Kyoto was the capital of Japan in the past (years 710-784 AD) and is the center of a treasure trove of arts, crafts and literature of Japan. Buddhism thrived in this city because of the great support of the Emperor. Nara is a town with UNESCO World Heritage sites than any other prefecture in Japan. The atmosphere is quiet and peaceful town that makes Nara the perfect place for contemplation. Most of the historic sites can be visited on foot, for about 5 hours.

    Osaka Station
    After a full breakfast, we went to the Osaka Station to catch the train to Nara. First we had to catch the train to Osaka Loop Line operated by JR West to Tsuruhashi Station with a ticket price of ¥ 170, then proceed with the Kintetsu Nara Line trains Rapid Express operated railway company Kintetsu up Kintetsunara Station at a price of ¥ 480 ticket. Total travel time is 50 minutes. This is the cheapest and fastest option to get the city of Nara.

    Another option is to use the train JR Nara Station Rapid Yamatoji goal with ticket ¥ 780 and takes 51 minutes. Only operated JR Nara Station West is not actually located in the city center, but 1 km further away from the first temple that we want to visit when compared with Kintetsunara Station.

    We are experiencing technical problems when a train transfer in Tsuruhashi Station. As I explained above, the Osaka Loop Line operated by JR West so we had to transfer to Kintetsu Nara Line Rapid Express operated by the railway company Kintetsu. Each company has a rail network that is separate. After coming down from the Osaka Loop Line to Nara we buy tickets at ticket vending machines nearby. But when the ticket is inserted into a ticket machine, the ticket is rejected. I also was confused how the Osaka Loop Line ticket which we bought earlier. I have tried many times to no avail, and this excited the officers at Kintetsu Tsuruhashi Station.

    The officer then explained that the way the transfer is to include both earlier to the ticket machines, ticket for the purpose Kintetsunara later would come out at the end of the engine electronic doors to my store and fill out a ticket at the station Kintetsunara while Osaka Loop Line will be recorded by the machine. This method can be applied in Jakarta to tackle the problem of transfer passengers MRT and monorail which is planned to be operational in 2016.

    Kofukuji
    We arrived at the station at 11.00 Kintetsunara. At the station, we left the bag in the locker coins are widely available. To save money, we entrust the entire bag in a locker at a cost of ¥ 500. Next we headed first temple that is (Kofukuji). The temple was first built in 710 AD is included in UNESCO World Heritage Site. At its heyday, the temple has 175 buildings, but most have been destroyed during the 1,300-year journey. The main building remaining is 5 storey pagoda dating from 1426, Tokondo Hall which was built in 1415 and pagoda 3 floors of the early 13th century.

    In this temple we just drive around in the temple courtyard. But I found a group of students who were photographed kamehameha a la Dragon Ball Z. Currently this photo pose a trend among high school students in Japan.

    Kofukuji satisfied, we go to the next destination is the park  (Yoshikien). At first we also want to park (Isuien), but we are required to pay ¥ 500 to enjoy this Japanese-style garden. Finally we visited Yoshikien located beside the park Isuien, foreign tourists are free to enjoy the garden is cared for. Yoshikien park is very well maintained and there was silence. The sound of running water from a small river next to the park really reassuring.

    The next goal is the Nara National Museum. Unfortunately when we were there, the museum is closed. We only around a spacious garden filled with deer wandering freely. The places we visited today are largely located in Nara Park, a nature reserve inhabited area of ​​approximately 1,200 tailed deer population.

    Nara National Museum
    After that we went to  (Todaiji Temple) situated not far from the museum. This temple is famous for  (Daibutsu), a giant Buddha statue 16.2 meter tall bronze. Daibutsu is a building that houses the largest wooden structure in the world. Todaiji was also awarded the title of UNESCO World Heritage Site. Because the back has to pay ¥ 500, my friend refused to go in.

    We then continue to the next destination, namely  (Nigatsudo) Hall. Nigatsudo Hall is still a part of the Todaiji, but its location at the foot (Mount Wakakusa) makes it look like separate from Todaiji complex. Historically, this temple was built by a Buddhist monk named Jitchu in the year 752 as a temple Sanetada. Fortunately for us to go into the Hall Nigatsudo is free of charge. We can see Nara City of altitude in this place.

    After the Nigatsudo Hall, we went back on foot and discover the Mount Wakakusa located at an altitude of 342 meters above sea level. Vegetation in this hill looks very well maintained. Apparently grass growth is maintained by burning every year on the fourth Saturday in January, the celebration itself is called (yamayaki), or the literal translation burn dead grass on the slopes. To go up the hill, visitors must pay ¥ 150. Of course we skipped this because it is satisfied watched from behind the fence

    Kasuga Taisha
    Furthermore, we walked back to (Kasuga Taisha), which is one of the Shinto shrine whose whereabouts are among the most important in Japan. This temple was built in 768 AD in the middle of vast forests with dominant red color that makes a contrast with the surrounding trees. Kasuga Taisha included in the list of UNESCO World Heritage Site. However having to pay ¥ 500, we do not enter into it.

    Temple last we visited in Nara is (Shin Yakushiji), a temple built in the year 747. The main building which originated in the same year and several statues of Buddha are also housed here, confirmed as World Heritage by the Japanese Government. The price of the entry ticket expensive when compared to other temples, which is ¥ 600. Therefore we chose to go to the old city of Nara course, called Naramachi.

    Naramachi used to be a residential area merchants whose history can be traced back to several centuries ago. Residential architecture in the region has not changed since a few centuries ago as an effort to preserve culture. In this area there is a row of boutiques, cafes, restaurants and cultural museum. We just drive around until it reached the (Swimming Sarusawa-ike). The pool is located behind Kofukuji. 5-storey pagoda Kofukuji reflection can be seen in the water in this pool on a sunny day. We rested for a moment because since the morning run without pause.

    Naramachi used to be a residential area merchants whose history can be traced back to several centuries ago. Residential architecture in the region has not changed since a few centuries ago as an effort to preserve culture. In this area there is a row of boutiques, cafes, restaurants and cultural museum. We just drive around until it reached the (Swimming Sarusawa-ike). The pool is located behind Kofukuji. 5-storey pagoda Kofukuji reflection can be seen in the water in this pool on a sunny day. We rested for a moment because since the morning run without pause.

    16:30, we had arrived back at the station Kintetsunara. After taking the bag and bought our tickets right down to the platform. However, the train Kyoto goal, our next destination just arrived at 17:17. We ride Kintetsu Kyoto Line Express with the ticket price of ¥ 610. The distance covered 39 km and takes about 46 minutes.

    Promptly at 18:02, we arrived at Kyoto Station. We went straight to check in at our inn that night, Kyoto Hana Hostel. This hostel is our cheapest accommodation during in Japan, a person charged ¥ 2,500.

    Fushimi Inari
    After dinner, I propose to my friends to pay a visit to one of the temples in Kyoto, namely (Fushimi Inari Taisha), which incidentally was only one station from Kyoto Station. We rode the local fire ketera Nara goal with ¥ 140 ticket. We were then dropped off at a small station called Station Inari. Once out of the door of the station, appeared gate Fushimi Inari Taisha stands. This shrine is a major shrine of Inari, which was founded in the foothills are also called Inari. This temple is a symbol of the fox. The interesting thing about this temple is that visitors can feel the hiking to the top of the hill along 4 kilometers. Along the way there are thousands  (Torii) that houses the visitor.

    It was already evening and we were too tired after walking for 5 hours in Nara afternoon, we just climb up the nearest Torii row. My friends asked for a photo and then we went back to the hostel to rest.

    Friday, January 1, 2016

    Five Lakes Fujigoko

    Fuji Five Lakes
    If traveled to Japan, would not be complete if you do not see Mount Fuji is famous for. Well, actually Mount Fuji can be seen from Tokyo, simply ride the Tokyo Metropolitan Government Observatory on a sunny day. But if you want a closer, we have to go outside of Tokyo.

    The most correct way is hiking to climb Mount Fuji. But this is certainly not everyone can do because it requires planning and bring hiking equipment.

    There are two ways in which most people are tour: Hakone in South Mount Fuji or go to the Fuji Five Lakes ( Fujigoko) to the north. Both offer a view of Mount Fuji from near and if photographed Mount Fuji will be in full full frame. When I finally decided to
    Fuji Five Lakes.

    Fuji Five Lakes are 5 lakes region in an altitude of 1000 meters above sea level, consists of Lake Kawaguchiko, Saiko, Yamanakako, Shojiko and Motosuko. This place popule as an initial base for those who want to climb hiking. The easiest and crowded is the Lake Kawaguchiko, there are many onsen and theme park Fuji-Q Highland.

    Lake Kawaguchiko
    Lake Kawaguchiko
    The lake is the most accessible and famous. If the train ride Chuo Line from Shinjuku, will arrive at Otsuki Station, then change to a train line heading Fujikyu Kawaguchiko Station.

    From this station can buy retro-bus pass, 2 days unlimited around this area by bus. There are two paths: Kawaguchiko Line and Line Saiko Saiko surrounding the lake that can be climbed.

    How to Fuji-Q most efficient is to take Chuo Highway Bus from Shinjuku Station West Exit, approximately 100 minutes. Whereas if you use also from Shinjuku train: take JR Chuo Main Line train (60 minutes with limited express, ¥ 2,570, free if you have a Japan Rail Pass) to Otsuki Station. Transfer to the train Fujikyu Line to Fuji-Q Highland (50 minutes, ¥ 1,380).

    Hakone
    When I finally decided to choose Hakone which has more classical nuances. I stay one night in a ryokan Hakone.
    Said the trip to Mt Fuji, Hakone through more full because it tasted 5 modes of transport: take a train, cable car (use cable-drawn train), Ropeway / Gondola, Cruise / Boats, and buses.
    Overall one of these loops can be spent in the first days provided to Hakone at 9am.

    How Getting to Hakone
    Although the bus ride may look cheap, we should ride train away. There are two types of trains that can be used from Shinjuku Station: Odakyu Odakyu Romance Car and ordinary trains. The difference is that its design is cute and has a panoramic roof, direct to Hakone-Yumoto 85 minutes, of course the price is more expensive.
    If you use regular Odakyu Line from Shinjuku Station Odakyu train ride (limited express) to Odawara, then exchange the train to Hakone-Yumoto, a total of 115 minutes. Yumoto this could be the base shelter because as a small town with a complete facility.

    Odawara Station
    Hakone Pass
    To enjoy Hakone, Hakone Free Pass is advisable to buy when in Shinjuku (¥ 5,140) or Odawara (¥ 4,000). With the pass 2 today, transportation around Hakone already be covered (gondola, boat, cable-car, bus) including roundtrip train from Shinjuku or Odawara.
    Buy this pass in the office Odakyu Sightseeing Service Center (Shinjuku) or via the ticket machine belonging to the Odakyu. If I, bought fitting arrive in Odawara station, because I only need a ticket Shinjuku-Odawara be a one-way ticket is purchased these normal, while from Odawara-Hakone new use pass.

    Ryokan
    To feel the atmosphere of Japan, I stayed overnight in a ryokan, a Japanese-style inns, in Hakone. Rates least expensive ryokan in Hakone ¥ 20,000 a night for a room the size of six tatami, both with half-board style Kaiseki meal (dinner + breakfast). Do not think it was expensive well as rates kaiseki-style dinner at the restaurant is around ¥ 2000-3000 per person.

    My booking Kisyunso Ryokan. This ryokan is located not far from the train station Ohiradai, 10 minutes with trains from Yumoto. Location ryokan emang somewhat difficult to find, even for those who had a map. Please contact me if you want to guide the way.

    This is excess ryokan has private onsen, aka the hot water bath. So we can use this pool alone without worrying about sharing a view of nude with others.

    Due to arrive around 11 am, we just entrusted a bag and ready to explore Hakone.

    Hakone Tozan Train
    Transport we use first from Hakone-Yumoto Odawara Up is Hakone Tozan train network. This red train interval is very often so it does not need to see the schedule, just waiting on the platform right.

    Until the Hakone-Yumoto train replace smaller but has kemampunan nanjak towards Gora. At some point this train will do the switch-back alias trains change direction without turning the head.

    Arriving at the station Gora, out of the train station, then continued rising Hakone Tozan Cable Car. You do not need a loss for direction because almost everyone who travel this Hakone take the same route. Cable Car shaped like a regular train cars, roads on the tracks, the difference is due to the extreme tanjakannya, this train is pulled by a rope to climb to the top, until the station Sounzan.
    Gondola

    Further to the Hakone Ropeway or gondola. The size is quite large compared to the Gondola at Ngong Ping HK, could fit 10 people seated. Well this time you need to choose a strategic place because of the Gondola we could see Mount Fuji.

    Get off at Owakudani station, this is the resting place simultaneously sell souvenirs Owakudani: Eggs Black (Kuro-tamago). The eggs are boiled with hot water full of sulfur content are more scattered in Owakudani.

    Here is also our opportunity to rest, eat, or just take a photo with the background of Mount Fuji.

    Lake Ashi
    Lake Ashi Cruise
    Further to the Gondola again from Owakudani up to Togendai, usually drastically reduced the number of tourists on this route. Yes it seems the only play to Owakudani (because of so base a tourist bus).

    In Togendai we will go up a yacht sailed the Lake Ashi. The lake water is calm and quite scenic. Ships used are also very cool pirate. His ship no indoor seats with heating, there are also outdoor for photographs. Unfortunately because of this December so the extra power should withstand the cold wind.

    A boat trip is about 30 minutes, and all the passengers get off at Hakone-machi.

    Because it was getting dark, I was forced to go home. Actually, if still light can directly connect walk to Hakone Shrine, which I will visit the next day.

    The last leg of here reached using the bus. The bus name is the Hakone Tozan Bus. There are several routes, but generally people will ride back to the Hakone-Yumoto. Well, this part is rather less palatable; streets winding up and down the mountain, get ready for the strong not be confused and drunk.

    Dinner and onsen
    Back to Kisyunso Ryokan, we went straight into the room and change clothes kimono to get ready for dinner. An old lady who prepare everything, then bring our food into the room.

    Eat plash discharged directly into the outdoor onsen which is behind the building. So good and relaxing!

    Hakone-jinja Shrine
    One place that could not be lived, would tomorrow morning I visited recently that Hakone-jinja Shrine. Quite a bus ride from Hakone-Yumoto toward Hakone-machi, still using Hakone Pass so no need to pay.
    Unfortunately that my time in Hakone only one and a half days, would not be able to visit all. For example Gotemba Premium Outlets, Gora Park, and Hakone Open Air Museum does not enter into the itinerary. So if you want to settle, you should spare the time at least 2 nights 3 days.
    From Hakone, I returned to Odawara.

    Japan Sanrio Puroland

    Sanrio Puroland
    Continued from my previous post,here goes the several list:

    5. Admission
    Well I think not complete if go to Japan not going to the temple or to the playground. For such Asakusa Temple or Meiji Jingu might be free, but usually a temple in Kyoto must pay. Cost 300 yen per one entry so. To playground heck yes the price is already fixed not negotiable, so the problem is that want to enter for baseball.

    But already all the way to Japan, so must go at least one. My recommendation really the Disney Sea compared to Disney Land. Why? As the game more exciting, better place for photographs, newer [not ancient] design, and clearly only there is only one in the world. But if you have more budget, you'd better buy 2 days pass. Price one day at Disney was 6900 yen and 12,900 yen 2 days as it can be checked on the website of the Tokyo Disney Resort.

    While admission to other attractions in Tokyo, a lot of really free. For example go to Ueno Park to enjoy the park, or to the center of shopping in Shibuya, check out the fashionable Harajuku, the streets around Akihabara to look around the culture of anime and manga, go to Odaiba to see Rainbow Bridge and photos together Gundam, and so forth. In addition to Disney, there are several playgrounds also around Tokyo that you can visit such as Sanrio Puroland, Edo Wonderland, Fuji Q Theme Park

    JR Pass
    6. Internet
    It does really required in everyday activities. In addition you can use to keep contact with friends that again the same way you [if for example there is a right nuisance lost], also for checking the GPS and Hyperdia. Until last year anyway XL 1.5 provider no free roaming promotion for postpaid customers and because I happen to users, so I use that campaign. Free first 3 days later charged about Rp 30,000 per day the which is thought not bad lah. But now I do not know whether there is a kind of promotion of local providers who work together but try to check before deciding to hire a pocket wifi.

    Pocket wifi was quite expensive around 100 thousand per day. If you go, it may not be too tasteless for eventual joint. But if for myself, I'd suggest buying a sim card specifically for the internet only. Finally I bought B-Mobile for 14 days, and it only cost about 4000 yen.

    So around 30 thousand rupiah per day. If you stay less than 14 days, it could take the 1GB for the same price but much faster. Want cheaper again could have join with friends, staying just use one mobile phone to the internet and if the activation of another new need in tethering

    At a hotel or apartment has internet so use only at outside. Another time sleep in Japan use Airbnb, host also provide free internet ,if not, just borrow pocket wifi is also free of charge.

    Daiso Harajuku
    7. Souvenirs
    Usually Indonesian people bring gifts to friends or relatives after traveling overseas. The last thing that must be done on bucket list is to do shopping to hunt for souvenirs, me myself has not even by one yet.LOL.

    Meanwhile the suitcase space was limited and complicated later to carry it and after return also must send gifts to one by one. So at least the person that we will give gifts must close to us or know us well. But if you still want to be kind enough to give happiness to many people, there are some souvenirs that I recommend.

    You should be shopping at Daiso! In addition stuff are cheap and so many kinds of option. Or you also can go to a supermarket or convenience stores in Japan and buy souvenirs. I liked most is that some sort of shredded buy Furikake Japan. It costs 100 yen only and lots of flavor. Daiso in Japan was different as Daiso here, variants more! I recommendation that Daiso Harajuku because it was super big and very complete

    Never buy key chains, already not in order, not going to be using that, in Japan it is expensive (300 yen late), given also ordinary people who do not appreciate. You'd better food some delicious snacks. Furikake it's lightly taken, the food is placed on top of the rice; it is unique-unique and really exciting. Usually the people I love are still the happy-happy. You can also buy some sort of cake in a box that was typical of the region.

    Typically prices range from 500 - 1000 yen per box and its contents there are about 10-20 pieces. Make you a school or work, you can buy a box for a classmate or the people work together. The contents of dry cake, mochi, sweets and biscuits. Packaging was funny. I recommendation if you go shopping like these in his Don Quixote Akihabara. Why? Because it is usually more packaging anime really so very Japanese plasticity

    Don Quijote Akihabara
    I never bought gifts cakes at Disney. It does not suit my taste and cost lot more expensive than my budget. I even told my friend I like common hobbies buy mochi diverse flavors, place in Don Quijote Akihabara. It was a small box price is 500 yen and make collecting. In addition you can also sort the candy.

    In addition you can also give girls sort of beauty items. Most can be shared and cheap-cheap it was hand cream, lipstick, lip balm, and types of small items. Around 300-700 yen per person. In addition to saving space in the suitcase, the price is also not make the bag too high. You can buy these in Matsumoto Kiyoshi and you also have to take into account the price of a visa, although now a special visa waiver for holders of E-Passport (but still have to register in advance).

    But special for students, a visa is FREE so you can calm. For clarity you can take care of themselves with the website checks the Japanese Embassy in Indonesia. During this time I use a visa to visit Travel Alone Cost cause more forms not complicated than others.
    Location Japanese embassy that there is next to  Plaza Indonesia. Prepare a minimum of 4 working days.
    I was leaked to the fear of visas do not qualify. Savings you do not need a lot to get to go to Japan. How to get a Japanese visa was pretty easy, as long as complete the forms usually must be accepted. The most feared is the problem and I learning account is from my friend that alternating Japan continues

    If you want to go to Japan for 7 days, saving of IDR10,000,000 in the bank that was more than enough. Essentially embassy going checked when you go 7 days, one day it counted IDR1,000,000 by them. So there are at least 7 million even you can get away

    But make sure also that you write itinerary makes little sense. If in your savings only 7 day vacation, and you write you want to Osaka, Kyoto, Nara, Nagoya and went to many playgrounds, incidentally certainly not going enough money and you could be mistaken there would be dark worker.

    Japanese visa was valid from 3 months after the visa is issued, so if you've bought your tickets now for the next year, you can only create the 3-month visa before departure fastest. No need visa for now because it'll actually expired visa first

    This price estimate can be cheaper or more expensive depending on your lifestyle. If you can get discounted flight ticket,that can also help saving cost. And if you want to use into other areas around the JR Pass, so stay plus the price of the JR Pass, then added the entrance ticket which you want coming. Then you can also prepare budget for personal shopping for example buy shoes, make-up, or food for yourself. Well, so for cheap travel tips to Japan. Although this is not the price that the majority of Indonesian people can not pay right now, but if you save and save more money that is the intention, could travel to your dream place.

    Do not forget to bring travel buddy that have the same vision and mission of the holiday. Not good if you're the one who have intention to save more money and eat at roadside happily while your friend wants to ride expensive taxis and eating sushi continuously.
    Hopefully these tips are useful for you, and should be shared to friends who are going to Japan

    Shinagawa Station Tokyo

    Hello, all!! Yesterday I just met my friend who says it seems that it is so trend goes to Japan nowadays. Everyone went to Japan and all the photo images that wandered in Instagram of everyone. And I think, yes really. The first time I went to Japan think still can be counted by finger with people I know who ever there. Now I think if anybody go to Japan not so cool already. But I think this is also because the numbers of tickets are cheap and websites that promote tours to Japan so Japan has been not just a dream away, but it was close!

    Many people long time ago can only daydreaming about travel to Japan as it is very expensive and complicated so many people just give up easily. But I think now it's actually going to Japan is very affordable than ever before. Or maybe because I often go there I knew would happen between them, so well this time thinking to create a blog to post this so that people could know from Indonesia cheap travel tips to Japan

    Shinagawa Station
    1. Tickets
    In addition to be diligent to look at the news and visit the Travel Fair, please subscribe to some particular airline to determine the discount and promotional events. I very highly recommend the ANA and Garuda Indonesia to go to Japan. Many think that their ticket prices are expensive, but  if you think of some benefits. My friend ever got the chance to see the Japanese cherry blossom season with only flight ticket IDR5,000,000 from Garuda airlines.

    Many people also prefer the flight from AirAsia which very popular nowadays. Air Asia it must transit to Malaysia first and we waste time waiting 4-6 hours for the next flight, so of course we have to pay to eat and drink during the wait. Then inside flight is also not get a meal, and our luggage payment double meaning of Indo-KL and KL-Japan

    If the ANA or Garuda, our 7 hours journey, usually the night and early morning flight had reached Japan flight so it was convenient for us. Friendly service, good food, and a padded seat. So until Japan was fresh and healthy. Then if Garuda could baggage of 23 kg but when they come to my knowledge Indo additional get 1 luggage again (so you can buy an extra suitcase or bag folding there), whereas ANA longer exists promo 2 x 23 kg luggage for flights to Japan. ANA promo ticket prices and Garuda that ranged from IDR 4.5 to 7 million, depending luck and smart searching. Unless you absolutely do not want to carry luggage, don’t want eat, willing to wait at the airport and a real backpack, yeah should check Air Asia

    You also can search for flight through the websites, I liked most was Momondo, because really easy used and immediately shows statistics and data for the date that the ticket price is cheap or expensive. Later out some other options that can be selected in addition to the ANA and Garuda. Then make sure you always buy Haneda flights, not Narita. Narita because it super far. Just like from Bogor to Jakarta times so wish, and you one way from Narita to Tokyo (2 hours) it should use buses / trains each way 3000 yen. If to Haneda, took 30 minutes and the train ride only until 1000 yen

    Internet Cafe
    2. Place to Stay
    The cheapest way to ride the course at home acquaintance. But do not get so guests who do not know themselves. Make sure you bring some souvenirs or by the by the people in a shelter, ranging from food, clothes, or other knickknacks

    But if you do not have a friend who can be boarded, I recommend choosing an apartment for a cheaper price. More okay again when you go to Japan with your friends so that more economical. My recommendation of course Airbnb (if you click through the link they will, then will get a free travel credit of Rp 300,000 late).

    I myself never use Airbnb for Japan because normally ride home friends or stay at the hotel sponsor, but some of my friends use it and I never played to the apartment page. Japanese apartment was clean, and we can cook delicious also be able to save on the cost of the meal. The size was not as small as I thought and prices range between Rp 500,000 - Rp 1,000,000, you can join with friends so quite affordable!

    If you have more budget, you should stay at the hotel. I do not recommend Capsule Hotel or or Internet Cafe though many recommend it. Because you can not leave the suitcase and belongings when traveling, because you only stay a few hours ride. If you want to find a hotel, check Momondo who were also able to.

    Location I suggest that you stay at Shinagawa or area Yamanote Line. Why Shinagawa? Shinagawa train because there is direct access to Haneda, so do not bother dragging suitcase mostly from one station to another station. It also includes an area Shinagawa Yamanote Line. Yamanote Line was the most crowded lines in Japan and usually if you want travel well in the area yamanote line only. Besides saving transport, is also not complicated mutually exchange dizzying train. That is in the Yamanote Line = Shibuya, Harajuku, Shinjuku, Ikebukuro, Tokyo, Ueno, Akihabara

    Taxi
    3. Transportation
    Transportation was quite expensive in Japan, if you want to stay in Tokyo, I suggest you buy Suica card. You can buy it in any minimarket of Japan's Suica. Usually once a road near the start of 130 yen. If from Shibuya to Harajuku was close and can be reached by walking 15 minutes. Quite frugal 130 yen!

    Map of Japan was so confusing really, so make sure if you know where to where prior to stay. The most important thing when I was in Japan that is the site where we stayed write Hyperdia going where from, and will be out the hour following which the platform should be sought, as well as price estimates. This super duper important so make sure you check this first. Japanese trains are always on time so do not be late

    You may ride a taxi I recommend that for long distances. I used to really reluctant to take a taxi because expensive, once entered just 700-770 yen, it could've all eaten in Japan...Ouch. But if you-do 4 pax and going to an area close to, for example, only a difference of 2-3 stations from the area where you and a rather difficult entry alley that is not clear, so you ride taxi because only about 1000 to 1300 yen only. And I think the prices are not so bad anyway because sometimes we searching for where it is really hard and take a train + road there come here it took originals. I used from my hotel in Shinagawa, Ebisu and a taxi ride to splurging only 1400 yen late if not wrong

    But do not try to take a cab constantly because the price is very expensive. I once from Disneysea back to the hotel in Shinagawa. It only take 30 minutes but finished around 8000 yen. And once I'm from Roppongi to Hiyoshi about 45 minutes, it was around 10 thousands yen if not wrong. Well if it's late and the train has run out and the choice of only a taxi, only the one you should stay in the internet cafe or a capsule hotel only 4000 yen late last night. Cheaper, new homecoming morning train ride :)
    Try to stay in the same area in a single day to avoid the cost of carriage back and forth. 1000 yen all day will suffice why if a train rides to places standard. Disneyland is only a rather remote area [in Maihama] because it is not in Tokyo but in Chiba, be like to Bogor so lah

    Well if you want to venture into other cities, baseball in Tokyo only. You have to really buy the name JR Pass. JR Pass can only be bought by foreign tourists because the price is super cheap. Suppose you want to Osaka Shinkansen disposable, one-way wrote an Area Rp 1,200,000, so back and forth already 2,4jt. JR Pass itself cost from Area 3 million, and you want circumference FREE Japan where use Shinkasen during any given day. Many tours and websites that sell JR Pass and you can select and compare prices. But if you want really tight budgeted, not have getting around first, just in Tokyo playing until satisfied

    Onigiri

    4. Food
    Food in Japan it could be really cheap, and can be very expensive. But usually I give budget 2000 yen a day. The morning meal eat onigiri or buy anything cheap meal in a convenience store, or if you stay in an apartment, you can cook yourself whether instant noodle brought from home, or instant ramen in Japan. 2000 yen a day I think it is okay very origin of you looking carefully. Can also survive with 1000 yen a day why if super economical. Moreover, on average there is not taxed again because it was all in, and a free drink. Bring bottles of drinking water and fill your stay hahahaha!

    Oh yes for those who do not eat pork, many also why restaurants that do not serve pork. The choices can eat Udon, Tempura, Sashimi, Sushi, etc. You can also ask his staff whether these foods contain pork or not to further ensure. Usually ramen was no pigs but there is also a vegetarian or seafood ramen, so many options in Japan so do not be afraid. The food at convenience stores (convenience store) at Japan also delicious anyway, both of onigiri and bento was inedible really.

    Food in Japan was also super big  size for the Indonesian portion so for you girls, can also order first and check is it enough or not. Avoid going to Izakaya or where people drink because they usually wear table charge and a minimum order, so the price can be more expensive

    Gion Art Theater

    Kyoto Gion Art Theater
    Finished eating and out of Takashimaya, we still did not realize time has shown 06.00 p.m. So we only had 3 hours to explore Gion before returning to the hostel. Gion Geisha District is one of Kyoto best places. Besides Gion, Kyoto actually has 3 Geisha District, commonly called hanamachi (Flower Street) is Miyagawa-Cho, Kamishichiken and Ponto Cho.

    So in total there are 5 hanamachi because Gion itself is divided into 2 of the Gion Kobu and Gion Higashi. Hanamachi usually contains a number Okiya (Geisha House), Ochaya (Tea House where Geisha usually entertain customers) and Kaburenjo, a sort of meeting place for Geisha are usually equipped with a theater and rooms that allow them to practice. Also in hanamachi usually Kenban Offices are responsible for the regulation of wages and the Geisha regulation, including setting a schedule for practice and clicking entertain guests.

    Each hanamachi also has a symbol (Kamon) of its own which usually appears on the kimono worn by the Geisha and lanterns mounted Ochaya. Among the five hanamachi in Kyoto, Gion Kobu, Ponto Cho and Kamishichiken is hanamachi with the highest ranking. Geisha in the area of ​​high-priced and usually visited by businessmen and politicians while geiko of Gion Higashi and Miyagawa-Cho-known prestigious high despite a lower rank.

    Shirakawa Minami Dori
    The first place that we explored in Gion Shirakawa Minami Dori is within approximately 650 meters from Takashimaya Dept. Store. I'm interested in exploring after reading the Lonely Planet called it "one of Kyoto's most beautiful streets and Among most beautiful street in all of Asia". Located on the banks of the canal that edges there are many trees Willow, this road does look beautiful. The road itself is not made of asphalt but of rocks neat and natural look.

    Lined on either side expensive restaurants and Ochaya were mostly made of wood so it looks natural. Unlike the Hanami-Koji, this area arguably more serene and beautiful. No messy cables on poles and willow trees were allowed to grow dangle indeed different from the styles of Japanese gardens are always cut a neat tree

    Of Shirakawa Minami Dori, we walked toward the Hanami-Koji Dori, the most popular area in Gion. As well as on either side Shirakawa area filled with restaurants and Ochaya were also made of wood. From the front, Ochaya and the restaurant looks small about 5 to 6 meters long but is said to reach 20 meters behind him. This is because the property tax policy in Kyoto basing the calculation on the width of the front of the building. Although the inside is full of people who were eating or drinking while entertained Geiko (Kyoto dialect for geisha) but from the front looks deserted as no activity. If the bar or pub like this, the neighbors would have been happy because it is not noisy and disturbed.

    The road continues along the Hanami-Koji, we stopped at Gion Corner. Located at Yasaka Hall adjacent to Gion Kobu Kabunrejo Theatre, it offers seven kinds of Japanese traditional arts will be staged within 1 hour. Dipertontokan art there are: Kyo-Mai Dance (native dance by Maiko Kyoto), Bunraku Puppet Theatre (traditional Japanese puppet theater in the list of UNESCO as Masterpieces of the Oral and Intangible Heritage of Humanity in 2003). In addition to dance and music, also exhibited a tea ceremony and flower arrangement Japanese style. Hour spectacle only twice at 7 and 8 pm with admission 3150 yen.

    By the time I get there first hour show is in progress, wanted clay show a second, but when I saw the ticket directly retreat :). Finally, we just look Maiko Gallery containing videos of Geisha and Maiko and exhibition equipment they use such as hair ornaments, fans and handbags. It turns out the hair style, color and decoration on the head kimono showed levels of seniority. Maiko usually dressed in brightly colored kimono with hair ornaments are changing according to the season. Also change their hairstyles adapted to the years they have traveled in the exercise. Every detail shows the difference to the short length alispun also showed levels. Long eyebrows showed maturity short while intended for the young.

    Hanami-Koji Dori
    Of Gion Corner, we walked back down Hanami-Koji Dori toward Gion bus stop located in front of the temple of Yasaka Shrine. From the bus stop we can take bus no. 100 or 206 to Kyoto Station and then proceed on foot to the hostel. These Gion walking tour of Takashimaya Dep. Store can be seen in the image below. Remarks Map (A). Takashimaya Dep. Store. (B). Shirakawa Minami Dori. (C). Hanami-Koji Dori. (D). Gion Corner. (E). Nis stop Towards Kyoto Station

    Gion Kyoto Station
    The journey from Gion Kyoto Station takes approximately 15 minutes. Before arriving at our hostel had got in minimart shopping for dinner and breakfast in the morning. The price of the raw material pretty well, one kilogram of rice costs 575 yen (if in my country has been able for kilometers), the egg content of 12 seeds price is 195 yen.

    Okay but could be for some meals. Finally precisely 09.30 the night we entered the hotel, went straight to the kitchen to cook dinner. Actually, I eat rice warm plus fried eggs but time will week turns cooking rice Japanese rice paper cooker all. Be push there trying to figure out the correct key, praying that the rice can be cooked

    Kyoto Craft Museum


    Kyoto Museum of Traditional Craft

    I am interested in visiting this museum because Kyoto is one of the most important centers of traditional Japanese crafts. Once the capital of Japan for more than 1,000 years, Kyoto became the benchmark quality standards for the arts and crafts of Japan today. Now various examples of craft that we can know by visiting this museum.


    From the bus stop Ginkakuji-Michi, we can take a bus number 32 go down at the bus stop Bijutsukan Kyoto Kaikan (Heian-Jingu) Mae or off at the stop number 100 Bijutsukan Kyoto Kaikan Mae continued to walk about 300 meters to the museum.

    Heian-Jingu
    Fureaikan located in the basement of the Kyoto International Exhibition Hall "Miyako Messe". Admission is free and open from 9 to 17:00. Once inside we are greeted three permanent exhibition hall featuring about 77 kinds of traditional craft follows the weave. Through video they explain the techniques used so that we can know the complexity of manufacturing Kimono Yuzen and Nishijin Ori woven fabric or manufacture of the famous Kiyomizu pottery (worth the exorbitant price). In addition to the showroom remains, there is also the name Event Room where craft fairs, demonstrations and workshops are often held. The events were held was not boring because it keeps changing every month and mostly free.

    One example of an interesting event is Maiko's Traditional Dance is held every Sunday. Usually to see a Maiko (Geisha candidate) dance we have to spend enough minimum of 3150 yen (approximately Rp. 375,000) in the Gion Corner. But here the show free of charge and even then in addition to seeing him her dance, we will also be given additional knowledge about the ins and outs of kimono and accessories.

    The museum is also open Surigata Yuzein craft classes, ie Kyoto fabric dyeing techniques. Classes that lasted for approximately 45 minutes this will give lessons on techniques that can instantly Surigata Yuzein practiced by the participants and delightful results can practically take home. Participants can choose to paint in a small handkerchief (600 yen) or bag (1500 yen). A visit to this museum I highly recommend especially for those who like handicrafts and before coming here first check what events are taking place.

    Nishiki Market
    Nishiki Market


    Kyoto Museum of Traditional Craft, I plan to explore Nishiki Market earlier than Gion considering that most of the stalls there closed at 5 pm. This market can be reached by bus no. 32 and 46 of the Kyoto Kaikan stop Bijutsukan (Heian-Jingu) Mae or bus no. 5 of stops Kyoto Kaikan Mae Bijutsukan all of which pass through stop Shijo Takakura which is the nearest stop to the Nishiki Market. Shijo Takakura is located right in front of Daimaru Dept. Store the section beside it Takakura Dori street which leads to Nishiki Market.

    Nishiki Market is arguably as "The Most Iconic Market" in Kyoto where the materials on display fresh foods as jewels in a jewelry store. Market which extends approximately 400 meters from the road towards Teramachi Dori Takakura Dori has a long history as the oldest market in Kyoto. In the Edo period (around the 16th century) this market into a fish market before moving into the grocery market as it is today. At the time of entry into this market do not envisage a muddy market and stench, otherwise all neatly with smells and sights tempting. Some stores provide food samples for diicipi but as a warning written on the website do not taste the food in excess and most importantly do not stand in the middle of the road because the road was narrow.

    Some stall that stole my attention include: Konnamonja (stall no. 50), which sells donuts fried Tofu dry brown and delicious eaten hot. Kimura (stall no. 43) is said to be the oldest in Nishiki stand (stand was founded in 1620) that sell satay seafood such as fish, squid, cuttlefish until scallops. Stand this may be the only one in Nishiki are labeled in English on stuff.

    One of my favorite stand is Uchida (stall no. 109), which sells an assortment of pickled cucumber pickles not only but also radishes, eggplant, lotus root essentially all kinds of vegetables can be marinated definitely sold here. For fans of mochi cakes here are Mochitsukiya (stall 99) that specialized in selling mochi cakes with different shapes and flavors. The latter is no Miki Keiran (stall no. 31) specialist sellers of Japanese omelette, really exciting seeing action seller stirring, filling and roll up their eggs. Chef expert can make 4 omelets at once, while I, the only possible Hirst

    Nishiki Tenmangu Shrine temple
    This exciting market ended in Nishiki Tenmangu Shrine temple, a small temple that had been built in this area to provide good luck for traders and buyers Nishiki. To check what is sold in Nishiki can be found on the official website here.

    Did not feel it was late Maghrib when we come out of this market. Although already tasted Donat Tofu in Nishiki and Tastings various food sample, still stomach started growling. Incidentally in this area there is a department store Takashimaya (see map location Nishiki Market above) so we could have lunch very late in depachika

    Kyoto Ginkakuji Temple

    Not only Shinjuku Sttaion which has 200 exit and once perched as the busiest station in the world according to Guinness World Records, but according to me,Kyoto Station is also busy and complicated as Shinjuku :).

    Apart from the traditional image of Japan as the city of Kyoto, the station actually very modern shades with a futuristic design and color of metal everywhere. Serves as the center of Railways JR, Kintetsu Line, and Subway, the station is also a gathering place of Kyoto City Bus and long-distance buses (long distance and overnight bus).

    In addition it will also include some of the leading malls such as Isetan which controls 10 floors in the west wing and Porta Underground Shopping Mall located in basement. If you do not want shopping, people can still visit Kyoto Theatre (near the Hotel Granvia) and Isetan Art Museum located on the 7th floor.

    Isetan Art Museum
    One of the must visit places in Kyoto Station is Skyway Tunnel which extends 45 meters above the station. The glass of the tunnel we could see the view inside and outside the station. To reach this place, from the main entrance road just to the right where there is a long escalator to get to the top level named Daikaidan or Great Staircase.

    At the end of this escalator people can relax for a while in Happy Terrace, a small garden planted with many bamboo trees. Well there next to the entrance to the Skyway that would end up in the ranks of the restaurant on the 11th floor.

    Skyway Tunnel
    Of the various modes of transportation in Kyoto, we chose the bus because although longer but cheaper. To get to City Bus Terminal, from hostels do not have to go back through the underground because the road will be more complicated. Just walk straight towards Kyoto Station, the terminal is located right in front of Hotel New Hankyu (see map of hostels above). To get around Kyoto today we bought the tickets City Buss All Day Pass can be purchased at the reception hostel.

    This pass gives unlimited access bus use in a day. Almost all hostels in Kyoto provide a wide range of transportation pass like this. So rather than bother mending bought at the station just in front hostel purchase price is also the same anyway. The disadvantage, hostels usually do not give the bus route map while if bought at the bus station automatically route map will be provided. If not given, Kyoto bus route map can also be downloaded here.

    Unlike the bus ride in other countries are generally up from the front and down the back, in Kyoto we should go up from the back and down at the front. If you want to go up and down do not forget to attach the sensors pass.

    Kinkakuji Temple

    The first place we explored today is Kinkakuji Temple, this temple from Kyoto station can be reached by bus number 105 or 205. In the City Bus terminal looking for any subsequent Kinkakuji platform reads every stop during the trip will be announced through loudspeakers and written also in the display panel bus with two languages, Japanese and English. In the bus route map, the journey to Kinkakuji Temple will begin from Kyotoeki-mae and ends at Kinkakuji-Michi as the nearest stop to the Kinkakuji. The total trip from the hostel to Kinkakuji approximately 2 hours. These buses can be seen on the map below.


    Kinkakuji Temple
    Kinkakuji is a Zen temple in northern Kyoto. Nicknamed the Golden Temple as a two-level building is painted with gold color. Actually, this place was once a resting place Ashigaka Shogun Yoshimitsu before it turns into a Zen temple in accordance with the will of the shogun. Unfortunately due to the war, the whole of the resort complex was burned and only a trace of the temple alone.

    The temple was built in 1397 it was restored back in 1955 after a priest who was later known crazy burn down until the only remaining temple ruins alone. Kinkakuji building is arguably unique in that it was built with its three different styles arstektur. The first floor is built in the style of Shinden Style that is abundant in the Heian era building.

    With wooden pillars and walls whitewashed appears to contrast with two gold-painted buildings thereon. The second floor was built in the style adopted Bukke Style of samurai houses and the third floor was built in the style of Zen Chinesse gilded gold color on the outside and inside. In front of the temple there is a pond with a small island 10 is a depiction of the places most famous in Chinese and Japanese literature.

    Passing through the temple we will arrive at the former home of the head of the temple (Hojo) a very thick feel his Zen, unfortunately, like the temple, the building is closed to the public. Uniquely in this Kinkakuji garden there is a set of sculptures with small tin container in front of him. It is said that anyone who could insert a coin into the cans will be blessed with good luck. It is also interesting to see the visitors-do try your luck with competing to throw a coin into statues.

    For fans of Japanese tea, in this park is also available Tea Garden. By paying 500 yen visitors will get a bowl of Matcha tea and biscuits. Near Tea Garden and the exit row of the sellers of souvenirs and food souvenirs of Japan, Yummy every seller provides a wide variety of free samples to diicipi. So although not buy guaranteed full Tastings here. Once again in the temple was not allowed to take pictures using a tripod.

    After nearly one hour around Kinkakuji, we went back to the Kinkakuji-michi bus stop to wait for the bus to Ginkakuji. Kinkakuji is open from 9 a.m. to 17:00 with admission 400 yen.

    Ginkakuji Temple

    From dismissal Kinkakuji-Michi we can take bus no. 102 or 204 towards Ginkakuji-Michi one nearest stop of this temple. From dismissal Ginkakuji-Michi still has to walk about 10 minutes to get to the temple. This temple is situated on a hilltop passable roads also rising. Fortunately, on the right side of the road are many shops selling food and souvenirs so, looking at the shops it does not feel the trip is to the top. It takes approximately 1 hour drive from Kinkakuji towards Ginkakuji

    Ginkakuji Temple
    Ginkakuji same as Kinkakuji also a Zen temple. Both have a close affinity because both are built by Shogun Ashikaga family. Ginkakuji built by Ashikaga Yoshimasa inspired by his grandfather who had built Kinkakuji. When the Golden Pavilion Kinkakuji dubbed the Silver Pavilion Ginkakuji named although pavilionnya itself is not painted silver.

    Yoshimasa was willing to cover this building with a silver color but unfortunately until the end of his life it is not ever materialize. This name also appears reputedly because of moonlight radiating silvery due to pavilion black lacquer which formerly were the dominant color of this building. I personally prefer Ginkakuji than Kinkakuji mainly because of the beautiful gardens. First came in I was made fascinated by the park's famous sand with the name "Sea of ​​Silver Sand".

    Sand scratched with perfect precision so that it seems a pity that the rain and wind. It is said that the sand and gravel scratching is indeed practiced continuously by Zen monks to improve their concentration. Which became the highlight of the park this sand is compacted conical mound with very skilled to symbolize Mount Fuji.

    When sitting enjoying the view of the garden there is a Japanese mother sand that invites us talk. Incidentally he is very fluent in English so I am free to ask it to him. With friendly she tells us the ins and outs of this park. Passable can also free guide :). After passing the Sea of ​​Silver Sand we explore the park moss (moss garden).

    Most as well as rock, gravel and sand is a key element in the Zen garden depicting the land covered by forest. Awesome here, as if the moss that grows itself is actually planted with highly skilled and careful. At the time, there are gardeners who plant Ginkakuji moss so I had the opportunity to observe a moment activities. Tracing the walking path in the park we came to the top of the hill where the view of the whole complex Ginkakuji against the backdrop of the city of Kyoto seen clearly.

    One of the things that makes me admire this park because all its aspects are made at one with nature. There is no iron element at all, all the fences made of bamboo. The connection between the fence that should be covered with bamboo nails. The existing drainage channels are also closed with wires woven bamboo boards so that everything looks natural. Walk around here feels so cool and reassuring. At the end of the park before the exit of the complex area we are given the opportunity once again to observe from close Ginkakuji pavilion.

    Nothing feels almost 1.5 hours we searched our place. Ginkakuji is open from 8:30 to 17:00 with admission 500 yen. All the way home to the dismissal Ginkakuji-Michi already rumbling stomach feels not to mention the air is so cold it felt want to stop by just to eat a warm meal at one of the restaurants. But again for doubting the halal and the ability of the bag to buy, we are discouraged to go into one of the restaurants it. Instead we stopped at a supermarket, intentions who want to buy light-light before a real meal in the restaurant.

    As usual I asked the clerk supermarket to translate its contents. The man in charge of a young man who was so serious pick out food for me. Once can sandwhich I want, we go around all the supermarket to look for other food additives. It has been almost 15 minutes circumference-perimeter when suddenly the young kids came up to me and asked sandwhich back bowing bowed apologizing for sandwhich it contains pork. Apparently he is misreading its contents, the behaviors that fascinated me. Perhaps he'd been trying to find us among the many visitors at supemarket large enough. Salute the same honesty and work ethic.