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Best Tourist Spots in Kyoto, Arashiyama

December is the time for travelling, and for those of you who wish to go to Japan but are sick of Tokyo, why not check out Arashiyama?
Arashiyama is a town on the outskirts of Kyoto and takes 15 to 20 minutes by train from Kyoto. We all know who picturesque Kyoto can be, and there are some sights you can see in Arashiyama which you can't in Kyoto. It is one of the popular day trips from Kyoto and also one of the most recommended places to visit if you are on holiday in the ancient capital.

What's good about Arashiyama is that even the train station is an attraction itself! For 150 yen, you will gain access to the station's natural open-air foot-bath and you can grab a rest while chatting with your friends or just to wind up before starting your journey on a cold winter day.
It comes with benches and tables for both locals and tourists to make full use of their time while winding down after a long day. The tables are even large enough to spread tourists maps across.
Not to mention, each person gets a towel to use so you don't have to weigh yourself down with your own. And apparently, a 10 minute dip would give the best results!
Near the station are many stalls lined up, selling traditional sweets and beverages. If you have a sweet tooth like myself, this would be your time-of-the-day!

It also sells numerous pretty accessories and trinkets which would leave you in awe. A souvenir shop really doesn't get much better from Japan's!
But no amount of food can beat the unique scenery one can see only at Arashiyama! The first I would mention is the Togetsu-kyo Bridge. The bridge got its name from Emperor Kameyama during the Heian Period. The right of the bridge is the Hozu River while the left is the Katsura River. But more importantly, the bridge is increasingly pretty and the landscape is changes with each season, making it an enjoyable place to go no matter what the season is.

Halt before crossing the bridge and take the time to head on up to Iwatayama Monkey Park. As the name suggests, the park is filled with nearly 130 monkeys and you are able to even partake in the act of feeding them. Definitely not something to be missed for all primate fans out there!

If you aren't a monkey fan, no worries because there is another reason why people head up the mountain and that is for the scenery! As they say, it is always better to view scenery from a high location and that is most definitely true.

Heading past the bridge would bring you to a road lined on either sides with shops, but the main attraction here is the fabled Tenryu-ji temple.
It has been rebuilt several times since its first construction but still keeps the traditional Japanese architecture. Definitely not something to be missed if you love Japanese architecture!

Furthermore, if you continue up the path, you will come across the bamboo grove which is one of the most popular sights for Arashiyama. The soft green and mix of brown makes a very soothing landscape for selfies and group photos. With some clever editing, the brown grass can be easily changed to green as well.

The length of the bamboo gives a very good height for any photographs with your natural height, a zoom-in oneself, or even just nature on its own!

The silence in this bamboo grove is one you will not find easily anywhere else. Embrace nature and immerse yourself in the sounds and experience.

And the next final location is Adashino Nenbutsu-ji Temple, famous for its numerous stone Buddha images. It may appear creepy to some but the atmosphere and sights would definitely be one which you will never forget.

And last but not the least, do not forget to check out the Kimono Forest! Pillars decorated with Kimono Fabric makes the walkway one-of-a-kind and unique selfie opportunities. The clear clean fabric is pretty in the daytime, but looks amazing when it is lighted up in the nighttime too. 

All these unique sights have me awaiting desperately for the day I'll be visiting Arashiyama. I hope they made you interested in visiting too! Sharing of photos would be very much appreciated.

All photos to be credited to their respective owners.

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