Food in Tokyo is pretty damn good, but we were pleasantly surprised to find that there are great meals to be had in Kyoto besides the traditional Japanese food it’s known for. These are the top five food spots we liked best. We only wish we had a better camera. Please excuse our sub-par photos.
1. Italian at Colori Caffe
A friend of a friend in NYC heard we had plans to visit Kyoto and introduced us to Yossi, Italian restaurant owner and chef extraordinaire. From the moment we met, I knew we were going to be friends. I could go on and on about how awesome she is, but I’ll save that for another day. This girl does everything by herself, from the buying of the food to the cooking to the serving to the cleaning. Crazy, right? But she does everything so flawlessly and seamlessly that we were able to really enjoy the food.
Kyoto: Tokyo’s #1 fantasy. A history- and tradition-packed city of beautiful Buddhist temples, quiet narrow streets and unique food arrangements. A sophisticated city which boasts incredible natural views during cherry blossom time and autumn (especially on those pretty tourism posters in Tokyo train stations). But we found out recently that it’s so much more than just a pretty face.
There is so much to say about Kyoto and why we’ve fallen head over heels in love with it, but that would take too long, and we’re busy kids. We’ve chosen our top 5 favorite things to do.
For photos of our trip, check out our Flickr page.
1. Fushimi Inari Shrine
Skip the insane crowd at overrated Kinkakuji (the Golden Pavilion) and go here instead. This mountain shrine reveres foxes, which are considered heavenly guardians. This explains the fierce-looking fox statues everywhere.
Torii of various sizes line the walkways, making for quite a visual as you approach and walk through what ends up looking like long orange corridors.
There are a ton of things to look at as you make your way up the mountain paths, so this is a fun shrine for the inquisitive photographer. Unlike the other shrines in the area, Fushimi Inari isn’t a quick walkthrough. The path winds up a mountain and takes a while to ascend. The crowd at the very bottom of the path suddenly disappeared as we got to the halfway point of the route, and we were left alone to enjoy the quiet. Unfortunately, we were drenched from the constant drizzle that day so we turned around before we made it to the very top. Entrance is free, as with all Shinto shrines (unlike the Buddhist temples).