2014: Kyoto (Part 2)

Our third day in Kyoto wasn’t as hectic as the second. But as usual, we started our day early and headed to Arashiyama district, which is located on the western outskirts of Kyoto,  Japan.

Before making our way to the famous Arashiyama Bamboo Forest, we decided to take the Sagano Scenic Railway (also known as the Sagano Romantic Train or Sagano Torokko), which is a sightseeing train line that runs along the Hozugawa River between Arashiyama and Kameoka. The charming, old fashioned train winds through the mountains at a relatively slow pace, giving passengers a pleasant view of the scenery as they travel from Arashiyama through the forested ravine and into rural Kameoka.

As we didn’t by the round ticket, we disembarked at the terminal station – Torokko Kameoka, and explore the small little town near the station.

The search for a food establishment in this quiet and rural town took some time, and finally ended up at a steak house. However, we were unaware that it was actually one of the local’s famous steak house so instead of ordering beef steaks, we ordered Curry Rice and Udon. Sigh!

After filling our tummies with a regretful plate of Curry Rice and Udon, we walked to Umahori JR Station and took the train to JR Saga Arashiyama Station, where we continued our itinerary to Arashiyama Bamboo Forest, located near Tenryuji Temple.

After which, we continued to explore the town of Arashiyama and The Togetsukyo Bridge, which is Arashiyama’s well known, central landmark.

Walking towards the south of Togetsukyo Bridge, we headed towards the Iwatayama Monkey Park which is located in the Arashiyama mountains. Honestly, I was expecting a Monkey Park with enclosures and cages like those you see in the zoos. However, the monkeys in the park are free to roam about!

As the sky was getting dark (perhaps because of an impending rain), we left the Monkey Park reluctantly. But before leaving the town of Arashiyama, we had to fulfil our travel tradition – writing postcards!

 

Evening soon approached and we took the train back to Central Kyoto for dinner. To celebrate our last night in Japan and our mini-moon, we decided to splurge a bit on dinner. After walking past some of the eateries, we decided to have a very sumptuous and costly beef dinner with sake.

With a delicious dinner and warm sake, it’s no wonder we drifted off to sleep pretty quickly.

The next day, we woke up at 4+am to prepare to depart for the airport. And with heavy hearts, we left the hotel at slightly past 6am and took the last train to Central Kyoto, before changing to the rapid JR train to the airport.

It’s been a great 6 days in Japan, and we (especially the husband) thoroughly enjoyed the hospitality, sights, food, and culture of Japan. With that said, we will definitely return to this beautiful country. In Autumn perhaps? Hehe!

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