Kyoto - Japan (Day 8 Part 4) Gion and Yasaka Shrine

November 19, 2014  •  Leave a Comment

Gion is a very famous historic area of Kyoto well known for being home to Geisha (also known as Geiko) but the draw to Gion is so much more than that alone. Gion has a very unique feel to it that is really hard to describe it is mysterious, lively, fun, naughty but innocent. There is a mix of ancient and modern, tourists and locals crowding the major streets and then there are the countless small streets and even smaller alleys. There is always a feeling that just about anything can happen at any moment here but not in a bad way. There is no feeling of danger just a sense of electricity and wonder.

The main streets are filled with people busy shopping and dining. There are numerous large department stores mixed with many high end smaller stores. If you are a foodie you have found paradise. There are many generations old places to dine intermingled with new modern restaurants.

I did a little shopping but mainly I just walked around Gion. This trip I did not see any Geisha though in prior trips I was able to get a quick glimpse. That did not put a damper on things though. The architecture is wonderful and it is a great place to people watch. Once I exhausted this though I headed towards one of the areas most famous destinations.

Yasaka Shrine is well known in Kyoto and my timing was perfect. In the short time I was there I was able to see a Wedding and enjoy some delicious street food that was being cooked up.

Main Gate at Yasaka Shrine (八坂神社)Main Gate at Yasaka Shrine (八坂神社)

I have bee to the shrine before but it was also a rushed trip. Next trip to Kyoto I must stay longer here!

I honestly wished I had at least 1 more day just to spend in Gion. Next time I will make sure and do this. As I walked back to my hotel on my final night in Kyoto I was physically exhausted but mentally exhilarated. I reflected on the places that I had revisited during this trip and the new places I discovered. I met several interesting and kind people in Kyoto. There really is nowhere on earth quite like Kyoto!

Exploring the streets of Gion, KyotoExploring the streets of Gion, Kyoto

 


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