Aside from Tokyo, Kyoto is one of the popular cities that travelers frequent to, especially if you opt to experience and see Japan’s traditional lifestyle and have a photo-op with geishas.s
Last March, I hopped on a plane and decided to do my first solo travel to the land of the rising sun. First on the itinerary is Kyoto, the city boasts of temples where you can see how the locals respect and preserve their culture and heritage.
From Manila, I took the afternoon flight to Osaka and reached Kansai Airport just before 9 PM. This trip gave me a lot of my firsts—first solo trip, first country that I have been two that has four seasons—so naturally, being the eager beaver that I am, I wandered around their clean and organized airport, and went to their bathroom to take my first ever #japanselfie.
And because I was so consumed in enjoying my sweet little time, I missed my bus to Kyoto. I waited for another 30 minutes, reached Khaosan Kyoto Theater at around midnight since I got lost finding my way, it was an experience, though. Seeing my hostel, neat, artsy with the most accommodating staff was such a relief. I didn’t feel like I was a tourist, I felt that I was one of them and I love it. I got to stay in a bed which they call capsule and it has everything that I can possibly need for the night–nightlight, an outlet, hooks for hanging your clothes and jewelries, pillows and comforters. Seeing it after losing my way in the city was one of the best feelings of the night.
My first full day in Kyoto was set for temple hopping, so I woke up early, had breakfast while talking to other tourists in our hostel’s common area and went on to see what Kyoto has in store.
And a #fromwhereistand instagram photo.
While walking up the temples, there are a lot of souvenir and food shops along the way, and they offer free taste, so if you are on a budget, enjoy the free taste of their local delicacies as it will sure fill you up on your way to the temples.
After Kyoto, I took the bullet train—another first—to Tokyo, and that, of course, deserves a separate blog post.
I only had one day to explore Kyoto and I wish I had more time but experiencing how it is like to be in a foreign country alone, dealing with language barrier, learning their culture and seeing those temples and shrines—that I only get to see in travel guides—up close and up front was really one for the books, truly one of those memorable travel moments of my life.