Thursday, December 20, 2007
Kyoto Vacation: Day 1 Part 2
Across the street from the Kannon temple was the Kyoto National Museum. I wasn't really in a museum type mood, so I didn't actually go inside, but I did snap a pic of it. Then we went back to the Kyoto station and picked up a quite bit to eat at the Mr. Donut and then headed to the Rokuonji Temple also know as the Golden Pavilion.

The Golden Pavilion is basically a temple covered in gold. The pond in front of the Pavilion is called Kyoko-chi or Mirror ponds as you can see the temple reflected in the pond. There are also several gardens near the temple and they have these stone pot things that you can try to throw coins it. You basically make a wish, throw a coin, and if it makes it into one of the pots, then your wish will come true. I tried a few times, but failed at getting my coins into one of the pots. It was a lot harder than it looks!

After the Golden Pavilion, we went to the Fushimi Inari Taisha, which is know for its 1,000's of tori gates. This was probably my favorite temple. The gates are amazing and the whole complex is like going on a hike. We didn't even make all the way through the structure as it started to get dark. Once we decided to head back, we faced sort of a dilemma as we didn't really know how to get back other than following the same path we took back, but we luckily ran across a group of girls who showed us a much quicker way back to the station. The girls were really sweet and we held some light conversations in English on the way back.

After all the temple browsing, we picked up our stuff from the lockers at the station and headed to our hostel. Hostel was pretty nice and definitely a good deal. After getting settled in, we went out for some really food at a beef bowl place and then to an onsen that was recommended by the concierge. Unlike the onsen I've been to before which were all outside and had nice views. This was an all indoor onsen that had different types of baths such as, a honey and ginger bath, mineral enriched bath, stand up bath, massage bath, and super hot bath. My favorite was the honey and ginger. Made my skin really soft and it smelt really good. My least favorite was the hot bath. I think I only managed to put a foot in before giving up on it. I don't need to be broiled like a lobster, thanks!

We then returned to the hostel and discovered all out other roommates had arrived. And not a few minutes after getting back, some Korean girl essentially accused us of stealing some type of cookie that she had bought. After telling her I didn't take any her thinks I let the subject drop, but I later learned from Janet, who know no only Japanese but some Korean as well, that the Korean girl was cussing us out pretty much for the rest of the night. Plus, I think she might have went through my stuff while I was asleep. But none of my things were missing and I never saw here again after that night, so I just tried to forget about the incident. Ignoring that little mishap, my first day in Kyoto was a blast!

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