Zuiho-in Temple – image © Damien Douxchamps
Daitoku-ji Temple is a world of small Zen temples. One of my favorites here is the subtemple of Zuiho-in. The chashitsu here is a masterpiece of “wabi sabi” design. And the gardens outside are great, too.
What could be better than a perfect Japanese garden with the azaleas in full bloom? The pond here at Toji-in Temple is one of my favorite garden views in all of Kyoto. I recommend a visit when in the northwest of the city.
If you want to get a glimpse of “Old Japan,” rent a car in Kyoto and drive way up into the Kitayama Mountains and check out Kayabuki no Sato (literally “The Village of Thatched Roof Houses”). This is actually much more pleasant than the famous Shirakawa-go in Gifu Prefecture, mostly because it is less touristy.
I love the hamlet of Kibune, which is located in the Kitayama Mountains north of Kyoto. Kibune is easily paired with a visit to nearby Kurama. I like to take the train to Kurama, hike over the mountain and walk down to Kibune. But, as you see, you can also cycle up from Kyoto if you have a decent bike.
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