June 7, 2015

Nishiki Market: Kyoto's Kitchen

Nishiki Market

I have a diverse taste in food; I eat almost anything. One of the reasons of my visit to Japan is to have a taste of it. Haha! It's not that I love Japanese food (it's kinda expensive at where I live) but I think that their food reveals alot about their culture. Somehow I got to taste their weirdness with their food. Kidding! 

Nishiki Market offers a variety of traditional foods of Kyoto - dishes range from pickled vegetables, candies, fresh veggies and seafoods, and seasoned specialties. There are also a number of restaurants and souvenir shops; I bought my woodblock prints here.

What I like about some of the food stalls is that they offer free samples. If you're hungry and doesn't have any spare yen, try all their samples. I only tried those that I think are acceptable to my taste buds. Don't forget to say "Arigatou gozaimasu".

Nishiki Market

Pickled veggies. 

Fish produce. I didn't try this one, looks weird. 

Small octopus with a quail egg. 

Sweets. Nicely wrapped. 

More sweets! 

Sea foods. 

Plastic foods. Looks real eh? 

I don't know how do they call this but it's delicious.

Fresh from the sea. :D

Fresh from the farm, 

I admire how clean the stores are and how the foods are wonderfully arranged and presented. This tells a lot about Japanese: they value their traditions, they have a high standard on cleanliness and their foods are carefully prepared.

How to get there:

It's a 5-10 minute walk from Hankyu Kawaramachi Station, just along the Shijo Street.

Just in case you're interested, I bought my woodblock prints at Daishodo store. It is along the Teramachi Shopping arcade. They have antique books, art books and woodblock prints - price ranges from 500 - 500,000 yen. :)

There was no other customer when I entered the shop and the store keeper didn't even bother to get up from his desk and continue to sit quietly doing his own thing. I wandered around slowly, admiring the art works displayed where some are dated a long time ago. I have to say, the artworks are amazing.

Kiyomizu-dera Temple: Temple of Clear Water

Kiyomizu Temple, Temple of Clear Water

“When Kannon-sama arises in your mind, then you are in Oneness with Kannon-sama.”

Resting on Otowa Mountain, Kiyomizu is one of the most scenic temples I’ve seen in Kyoto. The green mountain, the slow falling snow, and the ancient and impressive buildings made my visit lovely and enchanting.

The most famous part of this temple is the Main Hall (Hondo) - a huge wooden structure that houses the Eleven Headed and Thousand Armed Kannon Bodhisattva that extends to a veranda overlooking the temple garden and  the city of Kyoto. One interesting fact: it was built without the use of a single nail, the hall is supported by wooden pillars.

Niomon Gate (east gate).
At the back is the three-story pagoda under restoration.

Niomon gate. On both sides of the gate
are two kings which are believed to guard the temple from evil spirits.

Kyoto from Niomon gate.

Saimon gate (west gate).

West gate which was closed due to restoration.

The bell tower.  

Asakura-do Hall

A lamp at the main hall that caught my attention because of its design.

Located at the main hall (Hondo).

I took this photo from the main hall veranda. 

There were a lot of visitors that day.

Kiyomizudera temple.

Part of the temple's garden.

The temple was registered on the UNESCO World Cultural Heritage List as one of the Historic Monuments of ancient Kyoto in 1994.

How to get there: 

If you're coming from Hankyu Kawaramachi Station, take City Bus 207 and get off at Kiyomizu-michi. The temple is a 10-minute walk from the bus stop.

From the Kyoto Station, ride Kyoto City Bus No. 100 or 206.

Opening Hours and Fees:

Opening Hours: 0600H-1830H
Fee: 300 Yen
Special Night Opening Hours in Spring and Fall: 1830H-2130H
Fee: 400 Yen

Website: Kiyomizu-dera Temple