Category Archives: Kyoto

Kyoto to Tokyo: The Fastest and Cheapest Ways to Get There

Source: Japan Cheapo

The mega-city awaits.
Getting from Kyoto to Tokyo is quick and easy, as it’s one of the most popular travel routes in Japan. The old capital is separated from its contemporary counterpart by roughly 450km, which can be traversed by bullet train, overnight bus or another type of transport—all depending on your budget and available time.
If you’re doing any other trips within Japan, buying a Japan Rail Pass is almost definitely your best option, as it pays for you to go up, down and all over the country on the Shinkansen. If you’re just planning a single Kyoto to Tokyo trip, a one-way bullet train ticket may prove better for your bank balance (select Kyoto as the departing station). There are also some good-value train

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Campton Luxury Lodges: The Future of Kyomachiya

Source: deep kyoto

As regular readers know, I am a big fan of Kyoto’s machiya: the traditional wooden townhouses that once formed an integral part of this ancient city’s streetscape. As such I am always keen to support and promote local business that have wised-up to the great potential of these old houses as shops, restaurants, cafes, and hotels. I recently wrote about one such exciting venture; a new machiya resort in the Shinkamanza district of central Kyoto, and today I will introduce another which is equally ambitious and holds much promise for this city’s future.

CAMPTON Head Office is located close to Kodaiji Temple in Kyoto

Recently Janic Kuehner, an intern at local company CAMPTON, wrote to me about their good work restoring and renovating old machiya for use as luxury holiday lodges. Founded by real estate entrepreneur Masao Ono in 2015, this company has been active in reinventing these residential buildings as upscale luxury lodges that blend traditional grace and simplicity with every modern comfort for the perfect holiday home in Kyoto.

Masao Ono named CAMPTON after a historical hotel in San Francisco which is his personal favorite.

The company is centered on the CAMPTON Head Office on Nene-no-Michi Lane in the scenic Higashiyama district of Kyoto. Fittingly for a company so concerned with preserving Kyoto’s traditional architecture the CAMPTON headquarters are housed in a stately residential building, constructed in the classic sukiya-zukuri style, with beautifully preserved tea rooms overlooking a very fine traditional garden. As well as being the hub of CAMPTON’s activities this building is also used as an event space and has hosted several “Genius Table” roundtable discussions for local artists, scientists, educators, and business leaders.

The garden at …continue reading

    

Cafe Foodelica

Source: deep kyoto

Not too long ago, after a visit to the Shugaku-in Imperial Villa, I was passing Cafe Foodelica and popped inside for a cappuccino and a scoop of ice cream.

Home-made ice cream. Doesn’t it look tasty?

I don’t visit Cafe Foodelica too often as I am based in Fushimi (south Kyoto) and it is situated up north by Shugakuin Station. However, it struck me as I gazed around me at the colorful retro decor, that a post on this fine bastion of healthy organic food was long overdue.

Appetizing? Very!

Foodelica is dedicated to serving great-tasting food that is healthy and chemical-free, and each dish is beautifully arranged to whet your appetite. Under the proprieter Sasha Ashburne’s careful direction the cafe has now grown to be a favorite hang-out for the local community, and in addition to serving mouth-wateringly gorgeous culinary creations, it is also an event space and sometimes an art gallery. In their own words:

“At Foodelica we try to create organic, Non-Factory Food, that we serve at very reasonable prices, with good wine, coffee and sweets, all within a fun and interesting environment. The pasta is handmade, the salads that we serve with the daily plat-du-jour are carefully designed, even down to the home-cured meat and the home-made cheese. Foodelica is also a social hub. We speak Japanese and English. Above all, we are friendly and dedicated to making your time at the Cafe, whatever the duration may be, as pleasant as possible. Come enjoy the food, the drink, the ambience, the conversation, the art and… the value for money.”

In addition Foodelica can arrange special meals for vegetarians, vegans and others with special dietary needs as long as you contact them in advance. If you haven’t been already, here are some of the dishes you have been missing out on:

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Kyoto Statues: Takayama Hikokuro and Izumo Okuni

Takayama Masayuke

高山彦九郎

In 1783, on a tour to the capital, he prostrated himself at the eastern end of the Sanjo Bridge, when he saw the ruins of the Imperial Palace in the distance. After a major fire the palace had been left completely unrepaired by the weakening Tokugawa shogunate.

In anger, so a popular story goes, Hikokuro beheaded the statues of three Ashikaga shoguns at Tojiin Temple and displayed them in the dry bed of the Kamogawa River in a bold act of protest against the government.

His action raised popular support and was part of the anti-Tokugawa movement eventually led to the downfall of the shogunate less than a century later.

The imposing bronze statue of him, in the kneeling position, dating from the Meiji Period (1868-1912) is a tribute to his courage and love of Kyoto.

出雲の阿国

Facing the huge, storied façade of the Minamiza Theater from across the street, next to the river, half-hidden in a row of large trees, the statue of Izumo Okuni is easy to miss. Her impact on the Japanese cultural scene, however, is not. Izumo singlehandly created the kabuki theater from out of nothing.

She is said to have come to Kyoto from Izumo in 1603. Before coming to the capital she was a miko or a young maiden in the service of a Shinto shrine. When she arrived in Kyoto she found a lively street performance scene booming in the city: performers wore colorful clothing and played their instruments closer to the way rock stars do today than anything Japan has seen before.

Inspired and eager to please, she soon acquired a reputation among the lower classes for her wild, often outrageous dance performances on the banks of the Kamogawa River, near the Shijo Bridge, …continue reading

    

50 Day Trips from Kyoto You Just Have To Know About

People always ask me about good day trips from Kyoto or Osaka. Especially if you have allotted quite a bit of time for the Kyoto region and fear to get bored, it’s good to know what else you could do. And if it’s your second or third trip to the region, then you might want […]

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