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Kyoto and Hakone 2019 - Japan

history in real life

overcast 60 °F
View Japan 2019 on MurkTravels's travel map.

classic spa

After leaving Tokyo, we headed to the area of Odawara and Hakone, to spend the night at a ryokan. It's a traditional Japanese inn, involving shoes off, straw mat floors, mattress on floor for bedding, tea ceremony, traditional meals, with kimono-like robes ... all very authentic. There was also public and private onsens (hot springs water spa) available. It was very relaxing. The one we chose was also close to the Japanese museum for the Little Prince book, including a replica French town and information about the author's life. Sharon is a big fan, so we checked that out before hopping another bullet train (Shinkansen) to the former capital of Kyoto.

classic Japan

Kyoto, the very historic and ancient Japanese city. It's well known for all the shrines, temples, and religious sites. Here we saw a lot of locals and families dressed in traditional kimonos and clothes. First up was a smaller Buddhist temple that we randomly stumbled upon taking a back way (a less crowded way) to a more famous site. I don't even remember the name of it (Otani?), but it was very peaceful. Then onto a large packed site of Kiyomizu-dera. It has a very instagram infamous temple balcony as well as several pagodas. It's part of the UNESCO world heritage site within Kyoto made up of several temple grounds. We then wandered around the historic area of Gion and found the Hokanji temple pagoda (which was a famous picture we used as the background photo of our trip plan).

Our second day in Kyoto involved a quick train ride a little south of town center. That took us to Fushimi Inari. It's a mountain (really a small hill, compared to Colorado living) that is covered in orange torii gates as memorials to relatives that have passed away. Some are huge enough to walk through (they go over the pathways), while others are small hand held versions just laying around. There's miles of trails and tens of thousands of the gates. We walked to the top of the mountain and had some great views of the city. We ended our time in the city at Nishiki market. It had all authentic local food and crafts, and not so tourist based souvenir junk seen at a lot of popular markets in Japan.

Recommend:

  • a stay at a ryoken w/ an onsen
  • Kiyomizu-dera
  • Fushimi Inari
  • timing - if you're really into temples and history you could spend a week here. we only had a couple partial days to see some of the famous sites that were relatively close to the train station. but there's a ton more that was on our list that we could have done if there was more time: silver pagoda, bamboo forest, golden temple, parks, philosophers walk

Japan Trip
Tokyo
Kyoto and Hakone
Nagoya
Osaka

Trip Map

Pictures

View of Kyoto and Kiyomizu-dera
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the Gion pagoda
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orange torii gates at Fushimi Inari
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Murk Travels - Japan album
see more on Facebook Murk Travels albums

Links

MurkTravels Vimeo - videos of my trips & entertainment
MurkTravels Youtube - videos of my trips & entertainment
MurkTravels Facebook page - pictures, posts, and regular updates
MurkTravels Facebook photo albums
MurkTravels Instagram - my attempt at artistic travel images
MurkTravels Travel Map - all the places that I've been and the things that I've seen

Posted by MurkTravels 02:12 Archived in Japan Tagged churches skylines trains nature japan temple travel castle asia 2019 Comments (0)

Salt Lake City 2017 - Utah, USA

~ the birthplace of salt ~

sunny 102 °F

SLC

It's only an hour flight from Denver; and since we have free flights on Southwest (well, gotta pay $11 in federal fees), but might as well check out the "Crossroads of the West", an apparent nickname of Salt Lake City. While we were there, the highs were between 98 and 102 every day !

Who knows about SLC? Who's been there? Would love to hear your experiences and thoughts on the town.

Recommended

These places were awesome and we recommend checking them out:

  • Settebello Pizzeria - true Naples Italy style pizza that was Delicious !
  • Capo Gelato Italiano - Italian gelato that was much needed on the day it got up to 102 degrees C
  • Pulp Lifestyle Kitchen - healthy, delicious, and affordable
  • Saturday Farmers Market - chance to interact with the locals at Pioneer Park
  • City Creek center - yes, there is a creek

Activities

Here are some of the fun things we did and enjoyed.

Urban Adventure Quest : This was a blast and a great way to get to know a city. You get clues (and hints if needed) via your smartphone about your next destination. When you answer correctly, you get directions there and some history or interesting facts. You can compete against other teams for high score or fasted time to complete. We took about 3.5 hours and saw 20 different tourist sites.
This website has tours in most large US cities.

Temple Square : The headquarters of the LDS. You can take a self led or guided tour (both free) around the campus to see the temple, the tabernacle, the visitors center, the ancestor family search library, assembly hall, and a number of exhibits. Enjoy, but just don't get brainwashed !

Grand American hotel : Check out the fancy shops, courtyards, ballrooms, pool, or take a self led art tour of their collections around the property.

Wiseguys Comedy Club : We saw Orny Adams. Never heard of him before, but he was hilarious, with his connected 1 hour bit about how the new Millennial generation needs to toughen up. #OrnyAdams #CoalForOrny #LowerYourExpectations

Things we would like to do next time:

  • Park City & Sundance
  • Salt lake boat ride / tour
  • Winter Olympics site
  • Hiking

Pictures

Panoramic from the Capital:
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After Jesus disappeared from Jerusalem, he showed up in SLC:
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Get coffee-faced in Pioneer Park
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Yes, they have made a Polygamy beer there. The back of the label promises that you can love this beer equally with others. Ha.
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Links

MurkTravels Vimeo - videos of my trips & entertainment
MurkTravels Youtube - videos of my trips & entertainment
MurkTravels Facebook page - pictures, posts, and regular updates
MurkTravels Facebook photo albums
MurkTravels Instagram - my attempted at artistic travel images
MurkTravels Travel Map - all the places that I've been and the things that I've seen

Posted by MurkTravels 11:39 Archived in USA Tagged temple travel utah usa capital salt slc Comments (0)

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