My visit in Kyoto
We took a bullet train from Hiroshima to Kyoto and settled to the hotel near by Nijō Castle (photo). At the same evening we visited Kyōto Station (photo), which is a major transport hub in Kyoto (trains, busses, subway etc.) and watched the citylights from the Kyoto tower (photo). Next day we visited Kiyomizu-dera temple (photo), walked old city alleys of the area (photo), learned how silk kimonos are made in Nishijin Textile Center (photo) and watched Kimono fashion show (photo). Then we visted Kinkaku-ji "Temple of the Golden Pavilion" (photo) and next was the Heian Shrine and it's beautiful gardens (photo). After visiting Kyoto Handicraft Center I had an adventorous evening with coin laundy machine (photo).

Next morning we had a long walk in Nijō Castle and it's gardens (photo) and a rare opprtunity to follow the Jidai Matsuri (Festival of the Ages), which is held annually (photo). This festival was started in 1895 in celebration of the 1,100th year since the capital had been transferred to Heian-kyo and the parade consists of approximately 2,000 people dressed in traditional costumes ranging from the Heian Period (photo) to the Meiji Period (photo). Next day I spent walking The Philosopher's Path, a walk tour along the scenic canal path to Ginkakuji (Silver Pavilion), Honen-in temple and Eikando Temple (more info: japantourist and japanguide).

Kyoto info
Kyoto was Japan's capital and the emperor's residence from 794 until 1868. It is now the country's seventh largest city with a population of 1.4 million people. Over the centuries, Kyoto was destroyed by many wars and fires, but due to its historic value, the city was dropped from the list of target cities for the atomic bomb and spared from air raids during World War II. Countless temples, shrines and other historically priceless structures survived and are now part of the Historic Monuments of Ancient Kyoto UNESCO World Heritage site.

Kyoto has a long history of being the centrum of the religious and imperial powers. Heian-kyō ("tranquility and peace capital") became the seat of Japan's imperial court in 794, beginning the Heian period of Japanese history. Heian-kyō became known as "Kyoto" around the 11th or 12th century. Although military rulers established their governments either in Kyoto (Muromachi shogunate) or in other cities such as Kamakura (Kamakura shogunate) and Edo (Tokugawa shogunate), Kyoto remained Japan's capital until the transfer of the imperial court to Tokyo in 1869 at the time of the Imperial Restoration.
More history:, Wikipedia, Unesco.

Kyoto today
Kyoto is one of the few Japanese cities that still have an abundance of prewar buildings, such as the traditional townhouses known as machiya. However, modernization is continually breaking down the traditional Kyoto in favor of newer architecture, such as the Kyoto Station complex. With its 2000 religious places- 1600 Buddhist temples and 400 Shinto shrines, as well as palaces, gardens and architecture intact, it is one of the best preserved cities in Japan.

Kyoto is located in a valley, part of the Yamashiro (or Kyoto) Basin, in the eastern part of the mountainous region known as the Tamba highlands. This interior positioning results in hot summers and cold winters.

Kyoto's rich culture and experience are being utilized in modern technological industries. For example, semiconductor and liquid crystal displays have been made based on the techniques of Kiyomizu Pottery. Traditional skills developed more than 1000 years in this ancient capital are now being utilized in cutting-edge technologies.

The key industry of Kyoto is information technology and electronics: the city is home to many large companies. Tourism also forms a large base of Kyoto's economy. The city's cultural heritages are constantly visited by school groups from across Japan, and many foreign tourists also stop in Kyoto. Traditional Japanese crafts are one major industry of Kyoto, most of which are run by artisans in small plants. Kyoto's kimono weavers are particularly renowned, and the city remains the premier center of kimono manufacturing.

Kyoto - photo gallery
Osaka Castle
Kyoto Tower is the tallest structure in Kyoto.

Osaka port
Kiyomizu-dera is a Buddhist temple and is part of the Historic Monuments of Ancient Kyoto UNESCO World Heritage site.

Osaka city view
Kinkaku-ji "Temple of the Golden Pavilion", (officially named Rokuon-ji) is a Zen Buddhist temple.

Osaka by night
Nishijin Textile Center Kimono fashion show.