As previously mentioned, this day was very long for me, so be aware of pic-spam. It really started after lunch, when I headed for downtown. First I walked to Shuugakuin for paying my rent, and then I took the train to arrive at Gion-Shijou. The reason for going downtown was to finally pay the airport tax. At the bank I asked how to do it, and it turned out due to the small amount it needs to be done via ATM – so I could have done it last weekend as well, _if_ I understood the ATM itself ^^; Actually it was Japanese only, and ATMs are complicated in Japanese, so in the end I got help from and employee there.
After that I was wondering what to do. I also wanted to go to the Sanjou Bookoff, because I had a coupon expiring at the end of the month, but I couldn’t do that. The weather was bad, it already started raining when I arrived, and I don’t like shopping for manga in the rain, because the books get wavy. Then I thought about the Yasaka Shrine I discovered one evening before, and it was the perfect opportunity to visit it. I walked to the other side if the river, and since it’s part of Gion already, there were even more tourists, be it Japanese or foreign. Although it was raining lightly and it was very humid, there were a lot of people at the shrine.
I took a big round, and I discovered the Maruyama Park behind the shrine. Although nothing was blooming anymore, the park is pretty, there are even artificial lakes and flowing water. There were some lazy ducks at one of the lakes too – everybody was taking pictures of them XD I was walking in the park, when a foreign guy stopped me and asked me to take a pic of him. It was fun, because it was with his ultramodern smartphone, and it just didn’t want to work out ^^; After that he asked me about a few places and like how to get to the Kyoto Station – that was when it turned out he was Korean, because his guide book was written in Hangul. In the end I asked him to take a photo of me as well, and continued my walk at the park. I started walking upwards, and somehow there was no end to the road, so I got higher and higher up on the mountain XD I saw a huge bell, a cemetery, and saw some stair leading down to another temple or shrine, but I decided to check out the other direction.
In the end I found two stairs which seemed to lead two shrines. First I went upwards to a place which turned out to be the Chourakuji Temple. It was actually my first temple, as I have been to Shinto shrines before. Well, I’m more attracted to Shinto than Buddhism, so yeah ^^; The temple isn’t big, but it was several buildings, a small spring. It was quite slippery due to the humidity (actually I doubt it’s every dry there, because the forest is thick already), but I went up the stairs there. Actually I was in heels, because I had no idea I would go up to the mountains today, so yeah ^^; The way lead through bamboo tries, up to a small and old cemetery – it really had an interesting flair. And the best, you could have a look at the town from there, and that was when I realized I was actually quite high there already. The view was great~
After the temple I checked out the other stairs, and ended up at Ootani Sobyou, though to tell the truth I had no idea anymore, what exactly I was viewing – I just noted the name and looked it up afterwards. The buildings and the garden very beautiful~ There was also a cemetery and it looked great in that environment. And the best thing, at these parts there were hardly any people anymore.
After this I decided to head back to the town, because my walk was getting too long already. Later I realized I was missing quite a few temples and shrines around the area, but well, there was literally one at every street corner, and at least I saw the two highest ones. I was sure I would be going up there anymore, so it’s for the best. As for the others, I can check them out any time. I was walking here and there while going down and saw many beautiful places.
Being back in town I headed back to Shijou-Kawaramachi, which meant crowds… I just got a taiyaki to eat and decided to try the Sanjo Bookoff before going back home. It was already in the evening, and once again it was full of people – I swear I even saw familiar faces! And these are the people who just wear off the book and never buy anything, it’s horrible… I had to realize that I need to come back once more in the morning for the coupon, because it just doesn’t work out otherwise. I headed home, but the day wasn’t over yet: I had to go shopping for ingredients and fruits. On my way home I saw another crown just sitting on the ground, meaning, behaving strangely, but at least it didn’t seem to be close to the road. The incident on Monday was still strongly in my mind that time… Finally the long day ended. It was very eventful, and I have been to beautiful places – and to think it was only because the road didn’t want to end… XD