Monday, May 21, 2012

Beyond extraordinary.

cherry blossoms, japan, kyoto

Kyoto Prefecture holds the status of a World Cultural Heritage site as it offers many historical sites, temples and shrines that labelled Kyoto as world-famous tourist city. Kyoto once served as the capital of Japan and was the political and economic center. There is so much to see and do in Kyoto! I am very lucky to be part of Jenesys Kyoto Group; I must say Kyoto is truly mecca for tourists.
kyoto, japan, toji temple

Toji Temple (East Temple) it is a five storied pagoda depict as the tallest pagoda in Japan. Every 21th of the month they put up a flea market, by chance it was 21st of April when we’ve visit the temple. I witness the crowd full of life, roaming around and full of vendors actively dealing. The market has a wide variety of products like plants and some beautiful flowers, street foods, some shoes, clothes like kimono, sculptures and pottery.


kyoto japan, flea market


kyoto japan, flea market

Although I didn’t have chance to buy some goodies because of our limited time it was really nice to be there and see the temple. Looking on these pictures make me wanna go back and hope I tasted it but at least I took a photo on it (It makes me feel hungry now). 

We’ve experience the Yuzen stencil dyeing process which is the traditional dyeing practice. We’ve made our own souvenir a string bag. It was a very unique experience and I enjoy it so much. In the gallery, I was amazed with the outstanding work and with impressive colors and patterns and several designs of kimonos which was actually about 150 years old. Also, at the detached house "Yuzen-yashiki," sliding doors and wall panels bearing exquisite Yuzen paintings of Edo period evokes a picture of the old capital, Kyoto. 



We end up our visit on a souvenir shop where I bought a Yatsuhashi (Kyoto sweets) and craft of Japanese waving cat. Here goes my lucky cat I named it after our Japanese Coordinators Sohma-san and Yoko-san.


We've pass through this wonderful place, Kyoto Imperial Palace. 

We drive through a beautiful castle named Nijo Castle it was built  by Shogun Tokugawa Ieyasu for his residence in Kyoto. You can grasp a part of the life of samurais by seeing the inside of the castle and the magnificent garden.



Nijo Castle and Kinkakuji are both well-known tourist destinations. They have been designated World Heritage sites as Historic Monuments of Ancient Kyoto. A number of other temples and shrines have also been designated.

Kinkakuji (Golden Pavilion) is a Zen (One of the schools of Mahayana Buddhism) temple whose top two floors are completely covered in gold leaf. Formally known as Hokuzan Rokuonji, it was the retirement villa of the shogun Ashikaga Yoshimitsu, and according to his will it became a Zen temple of the Rinzai sect after his death in 1408.


It has an impressive golden structure topped with a golden Chinese phoenix, it was built overlooking a large pond where Koi fishes could be found, it is the only building left of Yoshimitsu’s former retirement complex. It has burned down numerous times throughout its history including twice during the Onin War and once again when it was set on fire by a fanatic monk. The present structure was rebuilt in 1955.


Our scrumptious Lunch. (Sorry, I forgot the name of the restaurant)
Sharing a green tea ice cream care of our supervisor.

Next Stop, visit to Ritsumeikan University.


ritsumeikan university kyoto japan, kinugasa campus
University visit is one of the activities I’m pleased to enjoy during the whole program. We’ve visit the Kinugasa Campus which is surrounded by historical places like kinkakuji temple and the like. Kyoto is a city of learning, culture, and arts providing a serene environment for research and education. We were tour around by two English men before starting our exchange program with the students of ritsumeikan university. At Kinugasa Campus, they’re actively pursuing a fusion of social sciences and humanities. Kinugasa Campus is home to six colleges – the College of Law, Social Science, International Relations, Policy Science, Letters, and Image Arts and Siences – as well as research facilities including the Art Research Center, making it an integrated education and research center for humanities and social sciences. The College of Letters have the most number of students followed by the College of Social Sciences. We’ve learned that the word ritsumei comes from a passage in the Jinxin chapter of the Discourses of Mencius. This passages states that “Some die young, as some live long lives. This is decided by fate. Therefore, one’s duty consists of cultivating one’s mind during this mortal span and thereby establishing one’s destiny.”


Bicycle parking area, well I guess most of the students own a bike.
Food are properly displayed in the cafeteria.
Exploring around the campus was a great opportunity, we saw their cafeteria which offers wide variety foods, different buildings of each college, and not to mention their advance technology like providing a campus-wide wireless Internet access, and the kiosk machine we saw which actually gives service like assistance where you can get a copy of your grades, good moral certificate and the like in just a minute – it is being paid through their accounts in Co-op if I’m not mistaken. The university Cooperative (Co-op) offers everything from food, books, CD’s and evens a travel services. The exchange program with the students has been remarkably a fascinating talk concerning environmental issues, I’m glad to meet new friends and thankful for the souvenir they’d gave us. 


Thank you so much for such a wonderful experience and learning. How I wish to get a masters degree here, somehow I’ll try my luck if fate would allow me. Well, I hope to see you soon Ritsumeikan University. 

This is our last night in Kyoto, we had a wonderful Dinner at Kyoto Nagomi Kan – its restaurant structure is somehow like western. But we actually had a gorgeous Japanese dinner. 


It was also sheila’s birthday! So, our dear supervisors arrange a surprise for her. We sang to her a birthday song and had brilliant toast or in Japanese “Kampai”. 

And lastly here's a random picture around the city at night ..
Kyoto Tower.
Cute bunnies (Sidewalk barriers I guess?)
Smallest canned coke I saw. and Japanese style canned coke (below)

doroyaki japan
Dorayaki for midnight snacks, we were happily eating doraemon’s favourite food that night. 

japan kyoto nigh lights

Kyoto as a world famous city is one of the wonderful places I've been the rich arts, culture and tradition I have experience is very unique, Although the experience was just a short time I felt that my heart got closer to the Japanese culture and people.

42 comments:

  1. Lucky you to be able to experience the beauty and grandeur of Kyoto! I love Japanese food and I splurge on them from time to time :P

    Thanks for sharing these lovely photos. Now I also had a feel of what Kyoto is :D

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  2. I am sure this was a wonderful experience for you. Your pictures made it come alive! I can only wish...perhaps one day.

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  3. hope i can visit japan one day :) that coke can is so cute!! :D
    visiting from bc bloggers

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  4. wow! beautiful photos and thank you for giving us a glimpse of Japan. :)

    **visit from bc bloggers**

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  5. Wow you've had a memorable experience in Japan. Hope someday I can visit Japan.

    BTW, hope you can also apply for your masters at any university in Japan

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  6. I couldn't get enough of that bento box. It's making me drool!

    I wish I could visit Japan someday...

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  7. Really a nice place and photos. I love the Cherry blossoms, so pink!

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  8. I wish I have money to visit Japan. I think they a very nice place out there.

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  9. nice pics sis. Sana ako din makapunta ng Japan.

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  10. WOW! I hope I can visit Japan too..:)

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  11. wow, you lucky to have such an experience. The place is nice and the foods looks yummy..

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  12. Gorgeous gorgeous flowers! It's my dream to visit Japan someday :) thanks for taking me there :)
    Are you there to study?

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  13. so blessed are you to experience all these things... i super love the dyeing thing, it sure to have so much fun!

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  14. @JonalynQuita No, I was sent to Japan as Student Ambassador. Just get lucky! All of the expenses were shouldered by the generous Japanese Gov't.

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  15. wow. this is amazing. i hope i'll be able to visit japan soon.

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  16. Kyoto is such a lovely place. So clean and orderly, even the bikes are line up neatly. Love that bento lunch :-)

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  17. The stuff there are beautiful. I love the flowers!

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  18. wow, I wish I could go there someday, it's just so pretty I love those old Japanese architectures... Thanx for taking lots of pictures =)

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  19. Wow same here! I also dream of coming to Japan.. visit their parks, gardens, universities, temples, experience foods, cherry blossoms, have some bento box and buy lots of kawaii stuffs!

    Hope you can get masters in Japan :) It'll be great for sure.. goodluck and also thanks for sharing those pictures.. It's really nice..

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  20. Thanks for sharing and letting us visit Japan (in Pictures, hehehe). I hope me anf my family can also visit this country.

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  21. very nice photos, I wish I could also go there with my family.

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  22. Beautiful photos. I'd like to see Japan too. I think it's an amazing country.

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  23. Omg, youre so pretty. And your lipstick looks so good on you.

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  24. Wow that was an amazing experience! My wife worked in Japan for 2 years and I kinda remember these scenes from the pics she sent me before. You are one lucky girl to be part of the group who went there :)
    Great captures, btw! Thanks for sharing!

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  25. Lovely pictures of Kyoto. I hope ot be able to visit there one day.

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  26. I'm sooo envious! It seems like you had a grand time in Japan. I hope I can visit Kyoto too. I'd love to see all those historical places. Too bad I'd have to wait until next year to see the Cherry Blossoms.

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  27. Wow I have always wanted to travel to Japan! Is this a college-trip kind of thing? (I can't check because there's no link for your previous posts *sad*)

    You didn't see any Geisha? I thought they're everywhere in Kyoto~

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  28. I have heard so much about Kyoto from my online students. I hope to be able to visit the place too! I bet you had a very wonderful experience and nice memories of your travel.

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  29. Waah lovely place! Japan is one of the countries I'm spotting to go to. Great experience you got there.

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  30. This comment has been removed by the author.

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  31. THANK YOU SO MUCH FOR ALL THE COMMENTS. I apologized for my poor layout which couldn't let you access my previous entries regarding my travel in Japan, so sad :( for the mean time i sort my archive into daily, you might want to hear my previous story. Thank you again!

    My first kyoto post is here -
    http://rochelleorcullo.blogspot.com/2012_05_19_archive.html

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  32. the flowers are so beautiful. i wish i could go there too someday. :)

    ~CorbyLove

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  33. i've been to Japan, Shirakawa and Tokyo but because of limited time (business trip) wasn't able to go sightseeing much...wasted opportunity, sayang talaga...

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  34. Love the pictures! I've been fascinated about Japan's culture. How I wish I can go there sometime in the future.

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  35. You seemed to have a charmed life. I loved to travel but sometimes financial constraints prohibited me to see a lot of places in Asia, but still nature that dream of travelling

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  36. Japan is a must-visit country and I will, visit it, in time:D

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  37. What do you call those flowers in the first picture? They're gorgeous! I wish to visit Japan someday, but I'm in no hurry.

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  38. Wow! Japan! I always wanted to go there. Too bad hirap makakuha ng visa and it's so costly to take a trip.

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  39. oh lucky you, i wish i can go to korea too and enjoy the beautiful places there and get the chance to meet my favorite korean actors.

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  40. I feel sooooo envious! Japanese culture is something so dear to me and I want to experience it first hand. But thank you so much still, for sharing your trip to Kyoto. Hopefully, I get to have my turn too some time soon.. :)

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  41. Wow breathtaking! I love the cherry blossoms. I envy you for being there.

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