Part #1: How I Quietly Fell in Love with Japan
Part #2: Getting Around Kyoto
Part #3: Bamboos Galore!
Part #4: The One in Which I Did Not Get Attacked By a Monkey
To be honest, I don’t really know what a Geisha is. But I knew that I really wanted to find some and take their picture. So I followed my guide books and headed to the Gion and Higashiyama neighborhoods.
Here is what I discovered: Geishas are really hard to find.
In all my walking around, I saw only one real geisha and she hurried away as quickly as she could. I came across many tourists dressed as Geishas, but you can tell the difference because they will gladly pose for pictures.
The good news is that there are plenty of other pretty things to see in Gion and Higashiyama, including many of Kyoto’s famous temples and shrines. I meandered through the streets with no particular destination in mind.
As I made my way south, I stumbled upon the Yasaka Pagoda, a five-tiered pagoda built sometime between the years 592 and 794.
I continued through the jumble of narrow streets to Kiyomizu-dera, a Buddhist temple in eastern Kyoto. Kiyomizu-dera is a massive complex, rising into the clouds overlooking the city below. The main structure is made entirely of wood and constructed without a single nail (so says the Internet).
Walking down from Kiyomizu Stage along a path on the eastern edge of the mountains, I found a bright orange three-tiered pagoda, contrasting brilliantly against the blue sky.
Kiyomizu-dera offers stunning views of the city at sunset.
And finally, some random night photography as I made my way back to the hotel.