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Bamboo Groove Kyoto

33 Interesting Facts About Kyoto, Japan

by Tsvete Popp

This post is part of the series Japan

Other posts in this series:

  1. Must Visit Places in Tokyo for First Time Visitors
  2. Interesting Facts About Tokyo You Probably Didn’t Know ~ Japan
  3. Things You Need to Know Before Travelling to Tokyo

The former capital of Japan, Kyoto, surprises with its surrounding mountains, stunning nature, countless temples, colorful shrines, excellent gardens, and bustling traditions. Kyoto has more than a thousand years old history to tell – it is still the center of the traditional Japanese culture. The city located in the central part of Honshu Island is one of the most interesting and attractive cities in the whole world which should be on your bucket list if you love history and traditions.

 

Tofukuji Temple Kyoto

Tofukuji Temple Kyoto

Kiyomizu-dera Temple Kyoto

Kiyomizu-dera Temple Kyoto

Kiyomizu-dera Temple Kyoto

Kiyomizu-dera Temple Kyoto

 
Fushimi Inary Shrine Kyoto

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It was our first morning in Kyoto as we headed to one of the most…

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So, here are the 33 facts you probably didn’t know about Kyoto:
 

1. Located in west-central Honshu, Kyoto is the center of traditional Japanese culture for more than a thousand years. Nowadays. Kyoto is one of the most historic and interesting cities to visit in the whole world!

2. After Nara, Kyoto (or Kyōto) was the second capital of Japan and held the status for more than one thousand years!

3. Nowadays, Kyoto is the capital city of Kyoto Prefecture located in the Kansai (and also called Kinki) region and also in Kyoto-Osaka-Kobe metropolitan area.

 

Kiyomizu-dera Temple Kyoto

Kiyomizu-dera Temple

Kiyomizu-dera Temple Kyoto

Kiyomizu-dera Temple

Kiyomizu-dera Temple Kyoto

Kiyomizu-dera Temple Kyoto

 

4. The original name of Kyoto was Heiankyo – the Capital of Peace! Then the city got its second name “Kyoto”, which simply means “the Capital”.

5. With a population of 1.5 million, Kyoto ranks as 8th in population among all Japanese cities. But back in the days, it was the largest city in Japan and one of the largest in the whole World!

 

Kiyomizu-dera Temple Kyoto

Kyoto
 

6. Kyoto is the name of both – Kyoto city and Kyoto prefecture. Both areas have a population of 4.1 million people.

7. The Imperial Palace in Kyoto, also known as the Gosho Palace, is located in the central part of Kyoto. With its simple lines and beautiful proportions, this place perfectly represents the Heian Period.

8. The Western part of Kyoto is surrounded by the hills of Arashiyama! This is probably one of the most beautiful parts of Kyoto, as the full of natural and historical sights. Here you can visit the most Instagrammed Bamboo Groove!

 

Kiyomizu-dera Temple Kyoto

Kiyomizu-dera Temple

 
Kiyomizu-dera Temple Kyoto

Kiyomizu-dera Temple

 

9. The Eastern part of Kyoto is surrounded by the hills of Higashiyama, Kamo River, and many temples.
10. In the North part of Kyoto, you can visit some of the oldest temples in Kyoto. centuries-old temples and shrines.

 


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11. Built in 1895 to celebrate the 1.100 anniversary of the founding of Kyoto, Heian Jingu is one of the most important Shinto temples in the city.
12. Kyoto is Largely untouched by War because the city was excluded by the American war plans. The Americans were planning to drop the atom bomb of Nagasaki here in Kyoto, but after considering the fact that Kyoto has some of the most important historical buildings in Japan they left the city without bombing it!

 

Sanneizaka Street Kyoto

Sanneizaka Street

Sanneizaka Street

Sanneizaka Street

 

13. When the people of Kyoto talk about war, they don’t really mean the WWII but the Onin War. Onin War was a civil war between two families of samurai warriors in the 15th century which took 11 years.
14. Kyoto has more than 1650 temples, 400 Shinto Shinto Shrines, 800 shrines, a castle, 3 palaces, and countless city parks and gardens!

 
Sanneizaka Street
 

15. Probably the most antique Shrine of all is he Shimogamo Shrine which is 1,337 years old. The original structure was built in the year of 678 by Emperor Tenmu who became the first monarch of Japan.

 
Kyoto Street Style
 

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16. The so-called Mother of all Shrines (Fushimi Inari Taisha) can also be found here in the former capital of Japan. The shrine is famous for its thousands of red Torii gates and fox statues located across the narrow pathways that lead to the top of the mountain. The sacred Mount and Shrine Inari are dedicated and named after Inari – the Goddess (in Japanese “Kami”) of rice. The fox statues “Kitsune” are considered to be the “messengers” of Inari.

 

Fushimi Inari Taisha

Fushimi Inari Taisha

 

17. There are 17 world heritage sites in Kyoto: Kiyomizu-dera Temple, Kinkaku-ji Temple, Ginkaku-ji Temple, Ryoan-ji Temple, Tenryu-ji Temple, To-ji Temple, Saiho-ji Temple, Nijo-jo Castle, Nishi-Hongan-ji Temple, Ninna-ji Temple, Shimogamo-jinja Shrine, Enryaku-ji Temple, Byodo-in Temple, Daigo-ji Temple, Kamigamo-jinja Shrine, Kozan-ji Temple, and Ujigami-jinja Shrine.

 

Kinkaku-ji The Golden Pavilion

Kinkaku-ji The Golden Pavilion

 

18. There are three historical buildings often mentioned as the most important: the Imperial Palace, the Nijo Castle, and the Katsura Imperial Villa.

19. The Old City is actually a replica of a more ancient one!

20. Kyoto suffers from overcrowding, transportation shortages, and pollution. That’s why the government of the Kensai region developed a law in 1965 that controls land use and transportation.
 

Kinkaku-ji The Golden Pavilion

Kinkaku-ji The Golden Pavilion

 
Akihabara, Tokyo

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21. The paintings made by Kano Tanyu in Nijo Castle (17th century) are considered among the most important paintings in Japan!
22. The Yasaka Shrine (7th century), is dedicated to the patron of the city – Susa-no-wo.
23. Daitokuji (14th century) is the center of Zen Buddhism. The main building that you can visit nowadays was built 2 centuries later.

 

Tofukuji Temple

Tofukuji Temple

Imperial Gardens Kyoto

Imperial Gardens

 

24. There is a Zen Rock Garden, called Ryoanji (15th century) is meant to be one of the most important places for zen Buddhists in Japan.
25. Probably the best panoramic views over the city can be seen from Kyomizu-dera temple (800 century).

 

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26. Kyoto University (1897) is considered as the best in Japan after Tokyo University.
27. The Golden Pavilion and Silver Pavilion are also located in Kyoto. The Golden Pavilion is covered with gold, but the Silver Pavilion is not covered with silver.

 

Maruyama Park Kyoto

Maruyama Park

Maruyama Park

Maruyama Park

Gion kyoto

Gion

 

28. People in Kyoto Prefecture consume bread and coffee more than people in any other prefecture in Japan do.
29. Kyoto is famous for its festivals! Some of the most important are Aoi-matsuri (spring), the Gion-matsuri (summer) and the Jidai-Matsuri Festival (autumn).
30. The city has seven independent railway services! You will need different tickets for traveling with different railway services. That’s why it is better to get a Suica or Pasmo prepaid card in order to travel with only one card when you change the railway or bus services!

 

Bamboo Groove Kyoto

Bamboo Groove

Bamboo Groove Kyoto

Bamboo Groove

Bamboo Groove

Bamboo Groove

 

31. JR Kyoto Station has the longest platform in Japan (564 meters).
32. Kyoto has only 100 Volts of domestic supply!
33. Nintendo was born in Kyoto in the year of 1889. Nintendo first started with producing playing cards for Japanese card games.

 

Bamboo Groove Kyoto

Bamboo Groove

Giouji Temple Kyoto

Giouji Temple

Giouji Temple Kyoto

Giouji Temple

 

Japan Accommodation:

 
Ready to visit Japan? Start looking for your Japan accommodation now while it’s fresh in your mind.
 
Want stylish accommodation in Japan you can afford?. Find the cheapest prices for the best accommodations possible:

 

Japan Flights:

 
If you are flying to Japan it is beneficial to use a flight comparison site to find the cheapest flights. I recommend and use Kiwi.com.
 
Click here to compare and book cheap flights to Japan

Rental Car in Japan

 
Rentalcars.com searches all the big car rental companies in Japan and finds the best price for you. This is probably the easiest way to rent a car in Japan and around the World.
 

Japan Tours

 
If you are the type of person who prefers joining a tour, there are all kinds of guided tours around Japan including Mount Fuji.
 


 
Enjoy the day!
 
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*This post contains Affiliate Links. I only recommend high-quality items and services I am confident about. The opinions are completely my own based on my experience.

 

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