I wanted to put together a quick guide on some things I got up to in Kyoto here and there that didn’t fit anywhere else. Prior to this trip, I had already been to Kyoto twice, so during my spare time on my third trip to this stunning city, I wanted to tick off some sights and things that I hadn’t seen before. Of course, I didn’t quite get the chance to get through them all – Kyoto just has such a never-ending list of places to see, things to eat and stuff to do! However, here is what I did get to see:

Heian Shrine

There are a lot more popular shrines in Kyoto than Heian Shrine however this beautiful sight is definitely one worth visiting. If you stay near Kyoto station, you can take the express tourist bus which takes you to numerous sights in Kyoto including this one. It’s absolutely stunning and I wish I could have spent longer here.

OHara Kobo Plant Dying workshop

For those interested in art, a short time to Ohara gets you to a beautiful family run business by the name of Ohara Kobo offering indigo and plant dying workshops. Here, we were able to select a handmade silk scarf to dye a colour of our choice. I chose a pastel pink colour which our instructor told us was made from red root. We also learnt a lot about dying with other plants as well as the mysterious indigo plant whos green leaves emit a blue ink when put through the dying process.

It was such a fun and relaxing afternoon here, and we totally shared it with their adorable little shiba-inu as well!

Kiyomizudera

I’ve visited this temple too many times but every time I visit I discover something new about this temple. Plus, the street Matsubara-dori approaching the temple is filled with souvenir stores and matcha products, it’s an absolute must-visit for anyone who comes to Kyoto.

I can’t wait for Kiyomizudera to finish its restoration / renovations. Would love to return to see what it’s like again then!

Obanzai Dinner at Kyoto Kohaku

I’m all about the sushi when it comes to Japanese food but for this trip in Japan, I was so happy and excited to try so many other types of Japanese food. In Kyoto, one of the restaurants we visited was Kyoto Kohaku, a small homely place just off the main street. Kyoto Kohaku serves ‘obanzai’ food which translates to home made cooking, small dishes they typically prepare at home. It was absolutely delicious! We tried raw yuba made from soy milk, namafu, the best smoked potato salad, sashimi, fried chicken, stir fry chicken and leek, yuba (I am obsessed with this!) and so much more.

The restaurant offers an English menu though most dining were locals.

Restaurant details can be found on their website here.

Yakitori at Kushimamma Kyoto

Another restaurant we visited in Kyoto was Kushimamma in Kyoto. They do yakitori (Japanese grilled skewers) along with all sorts of other small sized tapas style dishes. I love ordering small dishes to share as it allows my small stomach the opportunity to try as much as possible.

Here’s a peek at what we ordered below, our lovely tour guide Hiromi was always there to suggest local flavours and specialties to try and it was so great to taste so many different flavours during my time in Japan.

You can find out more about this restaurant here. Whilst most of our fellow diners were Japanese locals, this restaurant does offer an English menu should you wish to visit!

Eel Kabayaki at Marui Department Store’s Food Hall

Hehe if you’ve walked around Kyoto’s Shijo Dori near Kawaramachi before you will have come across a big store with the logo OIOI. I’ve always thought it was pronounced oi oi (must to my tour guide’s humour) but actually, it’s called Marui and OIOI is just some logo for it.

Anyway on the 8th floor they have a huge food hall and it is here where we tried chopped kabayaki eel on rice. A delicious lunch set that was one of my favourites for the whole trip!