We ditched our wheeled steeds today and instead bussed our way up to Northern Kyoto. Rain was on the forecast and the prospect of navigating Kyoto’s chaotic streets with a face full of wet did not appeal.
First stop, the Golden Pavilion. Actually made of gold! Inside and out! The less disappointing of the two pavilions was jam packed with tour groups looking to get in on the action so after a quick loop around the pavilion and surrounding gardens to confirm presence of AU we made our way to stop number two: Japan’s premier zen garden. It was thankfully a lot less crowded, and we spent a relaxed hour admiring the various garden features. A highlight was a small garden with packed viewing platform dedicated entirely an assortment of large rocks surrounded by neatly swept gravel.
We swept up a few more temples that shall remain nameless due to time constraints and made a bid to tick a culinary item off the bucket list: Kyoto Yudo Tofu. A local delicacy, it proved to be surprisingly hard to source as most restaurants seemed to be closed at this hour and the nearest open one was only open in the sense that it had no door or windows due to ongoing renovations. Short on time we rushed down to one final location which luckily. We were ushered into a private room where we were trapped until we made it through 8 courses of tofu based dishes. We proved the restaurant wrong and were able to eat ourselves free in time to pick up our bags and hustle down to the train station just as the promised rain started to sprinkle down upon us.