Kyoto has in total about 2000 shrines and temples – we didn’t visit them all, but a few …. but Kyoto is also a great city for shopping.
Our hotel was only 2 minutes walk from Teramachi and Shinkyogoku Shopping Arcades in one direction – something I didn’t know when I booked and the luck we with the rain ….. they are fully covered. In Kyoto the pavements on major stopping street has cover too. It must rain a lot in Kyoto. *laughing
In those arcades are worship and shopping combined. The images above is from the Nishiki Temmangu Shrine, that at first I thought was a shop. What I understand there is a couple of places for worship in the shopping area, but I only notice two.
We noticed it after our first dinner i Kyoto that we had on a very nice restaurant just across to the hotel. We took a walk after dinner to see what it was all about over in the end of the short street.
So when we woke up to pouring rain our first morning – the post office and the arcades was our targets plus the Nishiki Market, that is just a sidewalk.
Shopping paradise!!!!! Not any high fashion shops, but great for us stupid tourist to send money in. Loads of drugstores and souvenirs shops, but also some really neat shops with nice products.
The Arcades also holds Chicago … a fantastic shop for second hand and vintage kimonos. Nancy she got herself a stunning REAL 100% silk kimono with obi (belt) – the real deal for 4.800yen/$48/€42/£30/385SK. She is so small, like the Japanese ladies … I have to shop on the male section. I think that as new her kimono would have cost around 28.000yen without the obi. It looked brand new.
Nancy and I found a beauty parlor – so we booked massage … 60 min. And worth every yen. They call it Wellbeing, but I think it was Anma, some kind of Shiatsu. We was provided with a like a cotton pajamas and it’s all about pressure, kneading, rubbing, tapping and shaking. They don’t use any oils, but it was SOoOOoOo good. So we went back for a second treatment on our last day. A massage method that goes back to 1600’s.
Most hotels in Japan offers massage, but the girls comes to the hotel .. and you get in your room, but the prices are 3 times higher. And is’t the serious kind of massage they offer. I’m sure there is others too, but their phone numbers are not displayed in the rooms.
We went into the Nishiki Market, one of the sidewalks … and there we could buy all Japaneses food products and fresh. It was such crowding we could hardly move and there was no way we could walk together, so we lost each other very quickly – but we both knew where the hotel was. Very interesting area of the shopping arcades. There was absolute everything to eat, wear, drink, cook … eat … and of course gamble.
After a couple hours of contact of 3rd degree …. I couldn’t take it anymore. I had a green tea ice cream and found a bench to sit down on. After 15 min Nancy came. Never been in a such crowd before, could hardly move. The sidewalk was so narrow too.
Nancy bought quite a lot of bits and bobs … I bought her a silk scarf.
Those hours I was in there was just amazing …. there was tourists, but not that hysterical many. I think not many that knows that the market is there.
We also came across this small lovely Buddhist temple, the Seiganji Temple …. at the fountain area in the middle of Shinkyogoku street with funny signs and so inviting. It is the head temple of the Nishiyama Fukakusa School of the Jodo sect of Buddhism and was founded in the Asuka period (6-8th century).
It seems like the temple has many different events going. Seigan-ji Temple is also highly cherished by many people as the deity of performing arts. What I understand women particularly worship at the temple.
In the other direction of the hotel is the great high street, Kawaramachi Dori …. full of small boutiques, cafes and trendy shops. H&M has their shop there and also Danish Tiger, called Flying Tiger in Japan. Also only 2 min walk from the hotel entrance. The location of the hotel is just perfect.
Not that I shopped a lot during my visit to Japan, got my favorite facial tonic in Tokyo at Muji .. a couple of yukatas (lined cotton kimino) for my friends ,jelly soaps for girlfriends, a fortune bell for myself, a bottle of sesame dressing and Momiji Manju cookies. Oh, I forgotten all the COMPEED blister plaster I went through, they truly saved the whole journey for me. Got blisters in Tokyo already.
And for my leftover yen I wanted to buy Sake at airport, but with some research I found out that I would have lost it in the airport security at Helsinki Airport. So I bought a Tokyo souvenir bag in thick cotton (not really my style) and all my girlfriends want one too.
“Shopping is better than sex.
If you’re not satisfied after shopping you can make
an exchange for something you really like.”