Kinkaku-ji, the temple of the Golden Pavilion in Kyoto, by @japon (tranlated from French)

in #travel6 years ago (edited)

This is an authorized translation in English of a post in French by @japon: Kinkaku-ji, le temple du pavillon d’or à Kyoto

As my primary language is not English, there are probably some mistakes in my translation.

Remember that the person that speaks here is NOT me, Vincent Celier (@vcelier), but @japon, a French guy.

If there is a very touristy place in Kyoto, it is indeed this Buddhist temple located in the northern part of the city. Travelers from all over the world flock by the thousands every day to admire the Kinkaku-ji and its famous golden pavilion. It is certainly the most visited place, "the place to be", where you have to be seen and take a selfie.

I decide to go by bus, there is a direct line that passes close to my ryokan and brings me directly to the Kinkaku-ji. The buses in Kyoto are operated by different companies, and it seems to me that day to have taken the number 101 of the RAKU company. This trip marked me because the driver had a microphone and indicated everything he did, with a slightly nasal voice.
"Warning. I start", "Warning, I turn left", "Warning, I stop at a light"

After 20 minutes of this comic ride, I can stop him "kinkakuji-michi", the temple is right next to it. It is 8:30 and it opens at 9:00. I am one of the first, I have some time to walk around.

School groups arrive, whole cars with their teacher. All dressed in their dark blue uniforms. Some gather around the vending machines installed nearby, in a cheerful atmosphere. I remember then my school trips that I did when I was much younger.

I realize that a large tail formed in front of the temple entrance. I just lost my first place in the line. We are approaching the opening hours and tourists arrive by the hundreds. Everyone is lining up, the Japanese are disciplined, the foreigners are very noisy.

I finally reach the entrance of the temple, I pay the price of the entrance and I receive a calligraphy as a ticket (is a small prayer written on it?).

The tour begins with a quiet path, passing by several buildings of the Buddhist complex. Then this exceptional image. A lake, on which is reflected a golden pavilion. The two upper floors are entirely covered with gold. The contrast is striking with the surrounding greenery.

Because what makes the magic of this place, it is this symbiosis between the lake, the rocks, the cut trees and this small building placed in the middle. The image is exceptional, and just when I arrived the sun began to shine!

There are a lot of people, and it becomes complicated to take pictures. Everyone wants their selfie, it's a bit crowded.

Kinkaku-ji is not limited to the golden pavilion. There are also beautiful gardens that we discover through a small path. We pass just behind the building, to enjoy a beautifully maintained park. Besides, some women were busy picking up the smallest fallen leaves.

The ride lasts almost half an hour, with different atmospheres that are revealed to those who want to look at them, such as this small bridge covered with moss, this staircase formed with large stones, or this small traditional building with tatami mats and tokonoma.

I arrive at the top of a small hill, from which we have another view of the golden pavilion, which seems lost among the trees.

All this would almost forget that Kinkaku-ji is above all a temple. At the end of the route is a small place of prayer. Some patiently wait their turn to ring the bell and invoke the gods.

It is also a very commercial place, with many shops of religious objects but also trinkets for tourists. I buy a pair of chopsticks bearing the effigy of the place, it will be a beautiful memory of this day.

Although the place is very cliché, the Kinkaku-ji is really a place to see if you go to Kyoto. It is difficult to describe in a few words and photos the atmosphere that emanates from the place. One must simply know how to ignore the sometimes noisy crowd.

Without necessarily brooding the place, the Japanese prefer the silver pavilion, less tinsel, less "bling bling". This other temple is precisely programmed on my list of places to visit in Kyoto ...

-- @japon

01: Travel diary in Japan, by @japon
02: Tokyo, overcrowded city? Really? by @japon
03: Are the Japanese too disciplined? by @japon
04: Going to Japan without speaking Japanese? by @japon
05: Ueno, more than just a big park in Tokyo, by @japon
06: Asakusa, diving in the heart of Tokyo's historic district, by @japon
07: Ameyoko, Ueno's colorful market, by @japon
08: Tsukiji, the largest fish market in the world, by @japon
09: Climb the steps of Atago Jinja Shrine in Tokyo, by @japon
10: Hama Rikyu, an exceptional park in the heart of Tokyo, by @japon
11: Jimbocho, old books and tempura, by @japon
12: Shinjuku Gyoen Park and the best burger in the world!, by @japon
13: One night in Shibuya, by @japon
14: Takeshita dori : this little street dedicated to fashion (and good crepes), by @japon
15: They lie to you about Kyoto, by @japon
16: The temples and secret garden of Higashi in Kyoto, by @japon


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Thank you for your feedback. We'll keep this in mind in the future. This may also interest you.

That was really cool of you to translate this. I am a huge fan of japanese culture! Nihon!!

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It's about travel to Japan.

I live in Korea, near Japan.

If you are interested in Korea, especially Korean food, please come to my blog.

Have a good time the rest of the day!!

Good job @vcelier, you can capture very beautiful photography. japan is very beautiful country, i appreciate your work and hope yoou will share more pictures or stories like this in future.

Ohh its really amazing post 👌 @vcelier and your most of the post are awesome 👍😊 thankew for the entertaining us

I love this series. Thank you for translating these stories @vcelier. @japon is still in Japan?

@alexandraioana26 I am not in Japan any more but I will come back soon ;-)

How long was your trip? I am going to visit at the end of May for a week. Have you been to Nara?

I was in Japan for 3 weeks, and of course I've been in Nara. It's very easy from Kyoto, there are trains every 30 minutes. After less than one hour, you're in Nara. there is a lot to see in Nara, but all the temples are very close. So you just have to walk from one to another.
Don't miss Arashiyama too, you can stay a whole day there (about 30 mn by train from Kyoto station)

and one more question what's the best way to get to Osaka from Tokyo? :D
Merci beaucoup @japon

You're welcome ;-)
From Tokyo, some Shinkansen stop at Kyoto and some others to Osaka. But Shinkansen will arrive at shin-osaka, this station is not in town. So you will have to take another train to go downtown.
Another solution is to take a train to Kyoto, and then from Kyoto Station, another train to Osaka station.
You can plan all your train travels with it's easy to use.
If you've got a lot of luggage, you can ask your hotel to send them with taqubin, it's not so expensive (about 1900 yens for a bit suitcase), so you can travel without carrying your luggage. And in Shinkansen there is not so many place for luggages.
Feel free to ask if you have any questions.

Nice photography. Pl vote, comments

I love that land, that culture, those traditions, where things are as they should be, I hope you are having a good time @vcelier

Nice Photography.
I like this travel.
I appreciate your story.

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