Saturday, 7 December 2013

Sightseeing in Kyoto

The second day in Kyoto was taken up with the traditional activity of visiting temples. After having breakfast in Porta shopping mall below the station, we bought a day-pass for the city buses (500Yen) and joined the other thousands of people to begin our tour. The first stop was Kiyomizudera, probably the most famous temple in Kyoto, if not Japan. As well as taking in the history of the temple, and marvelling at the wooden construction, the other highlight was meeting schoolchildren from other parts of Japan, who were also visiting Kyoto on their school trips. Many had the task of engaging people from overseas in English, and filling out questionaires their English teachers had prepared for them. They found very willing partners in the group, who were excited to be able to speak with Japanese teenagers. The cameras were clicking and the noise levels increased markedly, but this person-to-person contact will probably be what the group remembers about this visit.