Adventure in Kyoto continued with an early visit to to Sanjusangendo Hall (三十三間堂), the longest wooden building in Japan. What makes this temple so famous is the 1001 life-size statues of Kannon, the goddess of mercy, inside the hall. A huge wooden Kannon in the centre, with rows of smaller, neatly arranged figures of Kannon on each side (500, to be exact), eerily glowing in the dark. Too bad, no photography is allowed so I can’t show you how stunning it is!
From there, we went to Nishiki market, then to Nijo Castle (二条城), home of the first shogun of the Edo Period, Tokugawa Ieyasu. Besides being a UNESCO World Heritage Site, one of the most special features of the castle is the nightingale floors, which emit squeaking and creaking sounds when walked upon. Cool stuff. The shogun was paranoid about being killed, you see. Again, no photography allowed inside the castle~
Every castle comes with a garden, and Nijo is no exception!
Late afternoon, we bused to Ginkakuji, Temple of the Silver Pavilion (銀閣寺). But decided not to go in since 1. we’ve already seen a temple this morning, 2. Ginkakuji doesn’t really interest us, and 3. admission fee is quite steep at ¥500. So we walked to the Philosopher’s Pathway (哲学の道) nearby. Walking along the tree-lined canal is one of the most popular activities in Kyoto during cherry blossom season but alas, we were there in summer when it’s so warm and there’s nothing much to see. So we turned back and had soft serve ice cream instead, haha!