Kyoto

Kyoto Sights: Post Office and Koban Police Box!

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When in Kyoto you can either choose to visit the big touristic attractions or look for things out of thr ordinary!
here is a couple of sights that for all their cuteness are regularly ignored!

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Kyoto Gion Post Office!
Diificult to classify. Is it a retro style or just pure fantasy?

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It is almost incongruous in its neighborhood!

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Even a koban/district police box can be of artistic value!

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A mounted police officer of another era!
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Kyoto Dragons

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I just love dragons!
There are not so many of note in Kyoto, but here is a small sample of what I discovered last week:

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Signboard at a cloth and accessories shop!

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Portal Dragon!

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For a closer view!

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Mural painting!

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Dragon water spout feeding a hand washing basin at Myoubensenten Shrine!

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Laughing or roaring?

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Surging forth out of nowhere!

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Back view!

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Small but ferocious!

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Carved wood Dragon at Toufuku Temple!

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Looks like a familiar pet!

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It certainly is not going to frighten many!
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Kyoto: Toufuku Temple & Gardens

You don’t have to visit Buddhist Temples in Japan because of religion.
An agnostic hedonist like myself can find many reasons to enjoy their visit.
It was the first time I had the occasion to look at Toufuku Shrine which renown for its beautiful gardens!

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Even inside Kyoto City it is surrounded by a lot of greenery!

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Through the main gate!

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Almost the whole of the Buddhist temple and its annexes were burnt down in a big fire last century and to be rebuilt as an exact copy!

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Imposing roofed walk!

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The main temple is surrounded by quite a few smaller ones!

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Beautiful roofs!

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The main temple built around its own gardens!

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Check the gardens history!

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Have a good look at the flowers around you before entering the temple!

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Irises!

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The main gate before the actual temple!

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A venerable tree!

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The first garden made of stones, sand and moss!

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Can you imagine the water swirling around the stones!

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Ancient and mysterious stones!

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From another angle!

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The land represented by the moss!

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Another tucked away garden!

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One of the buildings enclosing the garden!

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Moving to the next garden!

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Getting near!

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Going through one more garden!

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At this point you enter an unusual garden!

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This particular garden was completed in 1939!

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A very rare checkered Japanese garden!

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A last look before we take our leave!
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Kyoto Pavement Art

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Like in every city in Japan yu should have a god look at the pavements of Kyoto City, although they are remakably from this of other cities!

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For example whereas they are simply patted on the stone or asphalt, cycling lanes signs are solid tilework!

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Kyoto seems to be fond of bronze plaques giving bilingual directions to passers-by!

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Another example!

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Pavement decorations can be tiny like these near the Kabuki Theater!

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Or they can be immense inside malls!

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On the other hand Kyoto have very few kinds of decorated manhole covers, a somewhat disappointing discovery!

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That’s how far it goes!

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But the Demachi Esplanade made up for them all!

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Look at the pavement under the feet of the customers!

I took them all, so let’s see if you can rcognize all the seafood depicted on them!
They are all different, but they don’t need any explanations!
Here we go, 30 of them!

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Good-bye Demachi Esplanade!
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Japanese Sake Barrels and Others at Shinto Shrines in Kyoto City!

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One big difference between Shinto Shrines and Buddhist Temples in japan is that you will find Japanese sake barrels in the former and never in the latter!
It is great fun for the sake lovers to check which breweries are being represented!

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Kamomioya ShrinE!

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A little history for you!

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This is unusual: real rice offerings!

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Take your pick!

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And there were a lot more!

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Left half!

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Right half!

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Now, what is the name of this shrine?

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Tenmangu shrine!

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Even more unusual! An old sake press!

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The second one!
Both had been donated by Geikkeikan Brewery!

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I found even more fighting for space with a car park!

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Side view!

Good hunting!
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Myoonbensenten Shrine in Kyoto City

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As I said before it is a good idea to keep your eyes open in Kyoto while forgetting the big toursit attractioons at the same time! You can take photographs in peace and check everything without disturbing anyone!

I found this small shrine in Kyoto City which had a nice little dragon!

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It is also called “Myoonten/妙音天”!

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The main shrine!

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There was also another newer but smaller one with many foxes!

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But that beautiful lonely dragon was the main attraction for me!

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Not that big, but really exquisite!

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Surging forth out of nowhere!

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A grand way to wash your hands!
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Kuras. Japanese Warehouses in Kyoto!

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If you are looking for kuras/Japanese warehouses, Kyoto City is the place to visit!
Kuras come under all kinds of forms, styles and age!
This is only a small example of a search you easily turn into a full book!

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I found this one near the entrance of the above Shinto shrine!

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A real house in perfect state!

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Splendid window and blinds!

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Walls repainted anew!

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Roofing in perfect repair!

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It was actually part of a three-building complex!

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The second kura!

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A view from a different angle!

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The family owning such an abode must be more than affluent!

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Another kura quite nearby!

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In need of repairs, though!

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A few things missing indeed!

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I found this one inside the precincts of a Buddhist Temple!

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Rich Buddhist temples have a lot to protect in Kyoto!

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Beautiful window and blinds in perfect repair!

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Tightly closed doors!

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Kizakura Sake brewery Kura that I have already introduced!

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A kura transformed into a garage, or the other way round?
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Kizakura Sake Brewery Kappa (Water Goblins/河童)Museum in Kyoto!

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Kizakura/黄桜 sake Brewery in Fushimi, Kyoto City is not only famous for its sake and sake Museum bu also for a collection of Kappa/河童 or water C\Goblins of the Japanese legend which made the Kizakura sake Brewery TV d\ads so famous all over the country

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The “Kizakura Kappa Country” Museum was opened inside the precincts in 1995!

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The entrance!

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Beautiful swimming golden kappa!

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The sake breweries in Fushimi, Kyoto are renown for the underground water they use!
Actually anyone is free to collect such water inside the brewery during business hours!

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Kizakura Brewery sake barrels!

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Antique sake brewery tool collection!

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A double collector’s item:
A Kizakura Brewery antique metallic billboard and a traditional “fune/sake press”!

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A very sexy well-endowed female kappa!

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Kappa tableware!

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Antique Kappa Mask!

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Dressed to kill?

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Kappa figurines!

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African expat kappa?

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Kappa’s morphology!

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Drawings collection 1!

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Drawings collection 2!

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Drawings collection 3!

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The author who created such lovely female kappa for the TV ads!
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Kura/Japanese Warehouse: Kizakura Sake Brewery!

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Kizakura/黄桜 Sake Brewery is a major establishment in Fushimi, Kyoto City and is remakable (like many others) for its true kura concept!

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No wonder that sake brewers are also called kurabito/kura people!

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As the inside of a sake brewery was all wood, the latter is apparent everywhere!

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Windows come into distinct style according to their emplacement!

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Even the back and sides of the kura are noteworthy!

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Classic!
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Eaves Swallows in Kyoto!

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The summer has really started in Kyoto and there are true signs of it around!

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Can you guess?

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Any house in Kyoto considers itself lucky to have them under the eaves of their entrance!

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Eaves swallows, a sign of good luck and prosperity!

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Food is abundant enough but it is hard work to feed all those chicks!

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Bye bye little ones and keep this house lucky!
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Sake Brewing Museum at Kizakura Brewery in Kyoto!

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Fushimi/伏見 District in the southern mountains of Kyoto City accounts for no less than 26 sake breweries in all Kyoto Fu/Kyoto Prefecture. Among them Kizakukura Brewery is especially attractive with their free entrance museums.
You ought to visit the sake brewing museum in particular.
It shows only the main process and in Japanese, but the models accompanying the explanations are a sight!

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Rice milling/精米歩合

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Washing/洗米

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Washing/洗米

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Steaming/蒸米

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Steaming/蒸米

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Cooling/放冷

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Cooling/放冷

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Kouji making/麹作り

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Kouji making/麹作り

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Fermenting Starter making/もとつくり

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Fermenting starter making/もとつくり

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The Mash/醪ずくり

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The Mash/醪ずくり

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Pressing/しぼり

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Pressing/しぼり

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