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AtomicYak
May 9th, 2004, 14:11
I made this so people who have been to the Kansai area can share their favorite places to go.

Number one on my list is Iwatayama monkey park. It's in the northwest part of Kyoto, I believe. The area is called Arashiyama. It's a beautiful walk from the JR station to the park. You climb a mountain inhabited by hundreds of monkeys, and most are at the top where you can feed them (you are in a building feeding the monkeys, who are outside) potatoes, apples, or whatever else they are selling as monkey feed. Incredible place. I went there 4 times in my 9 months in Japan. Oh yeah, and this is where I got the picture taken that is my current avatar.

#2 - Daibutsu (Nara) I think it might still be the largest statue of a Buddha in the world. Anyway, it's incredibly old and it's magnificent. Go to Nara for the Daibutsu and the deer.

#3 - Daikichi There are numerous daikichi around. It's a small little yakitori chain with traditional atmosphre. Mmmm.....Yakitori.

LukeS
May 9th, 2004, 15:03
Yeah, Arashiyama is a great place specially during Spring and Autumn. Some other good places in the Kansai area is Uji which is the temple on the 10yen coin is located the temples name is Byodoin also the general around byodoin and the river is great depending on what time of year you go i would say its better than Arashiyama but thats just my opinion.

If you want some traditional Japanese gifts to take home or for yourself then i would totally suggest the small shops below Kiyomizudera and the area is nice to walk around even if you not interested in shopping.

Also the Walk of Philosophy (Tetsugaku no michi) in Kyoto is also nice during Cherry blossum session.

I found while living in Kyoto in 2002 that not matter what session you go there it always a nice place to walk in/ go sightseeing.

If you looking for a modern trendy place i would suggest Namba(Nanba) in Osaka.

AtomicYak
May 9th, 2004, 16:22
Agreed, agreed, and agreed concerning your suggestions. I took a trip to Byodoin in 2001 - it's gorgeous. And the Kiyomizudera (the las vegas of temples) shopping area is wonderful - so many good deals.

I also reccomend the Toji flea market. I forget what day of the month it is, but they always have it - maybe the 21st or 26th? A great place to buy kimonos or other interesting stuff.

LukeS
May 9th, 2004, 16:50
Hmm...i forgot which day too but yeah its good place to get some cheap items i actually had friends selling stuff there.(Toji flea market)


#2 - Daibutsu (Nara) I think it might still be the largest statue of a Buddha in the world. Anyway, it's incredibly old and it's magnificent. Go to Nara for the Daibutsu and the deer.

I think its the largest indoor statue of the buddha although i might be wrong? is the statue of buddha in Kamakura smaller?
Yeah, if you go to Nara its the place to go and also Nara Park with all its deers which walk around the surrounding street with not a worry in the world although when you go to Nara Park and when you are feeding the deer keep an eye out cos sometimes a group of them will appear out of no where i.e. behind you etc...

Japan as alot of Castle most of which were destroyed by conflict or fire however out of the castle still around today. The best Castle in my opinion has to be Himeji-jo(Himeji Castle). Its breath taking because of its beauty and Archiecture ohhh...it was totally amazing for me i highly suggest that everyone check it out atleast once. Also, I think Himeji-jo was the only castle never to be attacked during the samuri wars when you see it you'll understand why.

Hannah
May 9th, 2004, 21:40
Thanks guys!

This is a really great thread. :)

Although I have never been to Japan, my penpal sent me post cards and pictures from Kobe, Kyoto and Osaka (the castle and the golden temple?) years ago... My pen pal chose to visit those places in her holidays (She lives in Yokomama) so I am guessing they must be great places to visit.

By the way, I love the monkey picture, AtomicYak. Saw it on 2004JET ages ago and it amused me then too!


Hannah X

PS I have been placed in Gojo, Nara.

Greggar
May 10th, 2004, 01:15
Well, I've been to Japan a few times, mostly to visit friends in the Nagoya area, and in Kuwana and Matsusaka in Mie Prefecture. The Philosopher's Walk in Kyoto is a must if you like temples. There are like 10-15 along the walk, including Gingaku. Most people I think have seen pictures of Kingaku (the golden temple) but I prefer Gingaku (silver temple). If I understand it correctly they are sister temples. Its not actually silver like the gold temple is gold, but the grounds are much more enjoyable to me. Kingaku has a much more torristy feel, even has a giftshop and vending machines on the temple grounds, which kinda cheapened it for me.

Another cool place that kinda out of the way in Mie Pref. is Toba and Ise. They are pretty close and could both be part of a one day trip. Ise has a very famous temple (very big too) and the area is famous for Ise Udon. (Most of Japan has regional variants on common dishes) Toba is one the eastern coast, and has the famous wedding rocks. If you go in summer you can see pearl divers. Toba is whre the first cultured pearl was made. You can also get pearl (and black pearl) jewelry cheap. The shinto shrines all have frog totems in them, which are kinda neat to see.

Sorry for rambling there.

snzuul
May 10th, 2004, 07:30
#2 - Daibutsu (Nara) I think it might still be the largest statue of a Buddha in the world. Anyway, it's incredibly old and it's magnificent.
Largest Buddha statue in the world (http://whc.unesco.org/sites/779.htm) is at Leshan, in Sichuan, China. Maybe it's the largest Buddha in Japan?

May 10th, 2004, 09:14
Largest Buddha statue in the world (http://whc.unesco.org/sites/779.htm) is at Leshan, in Sichuan, China. Maybe it's the largest Buddha in Japan?

Is that counting the statues in Afghanistan that were demolished a few years ago? 71 m just doesn't sound that big.

snzuul
May 10th, 2004, 09:25
The Afghanistan Buddha statues were 51m and 36m. IMHO, 71m is pretty tall- that's 233 feet, or about a 20-story building. It's pretty impressive when you're standing at its feet and you don't even come up to the ankle...

May 10th, 2004, 13:24
The Afghanistan Buddha statues were 51m and 36m. IMHO, 71m is pretty tall- that's 233 feet, or about a 20-story building. It's pretty impressive when you're standing at its feet and you don't even come up to the ankle...

ah. 71 m just sounded tiny. *shrug*