Kyoto, Japan - Wontra Travels

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Welcome to Kyoto

Kyoto

Kyoto

Area: 827.83 km2 (319.63 sq mi)

Population: `~ 1.5 Million

Located in the central part of the island of Honshu, Kyoto is the capital of the Kyoto Perfecture in the Kansai rwgion and sometimes reffered to as “city of a thousand shrines”. The city served as the imperial capital of Japan for over a thousand years and the emperor's residence from 794 until 1868.

With a population of 1.5 million, the city is one of Japan's best-preserved historic cities with numerous UNESCO World Heritage sites and abundance of Japanese traditional architecture. Other than old buildings, it has rich cultural heritage which is evident from palaces, shrines, temples and other landmarks spread across the city. It is also renowned for its abundance of delicious Japanese foods and cuisine.

Kyoto was initially considered by the United States as one of the target cities for atomic bombing at the end of the World War II, however, the city was removed from the list and replaced by Nagasaki. The city was largely spared from conventional bombing as well, although modest air raids did result in casualties. Today, Kyoto’s key industries are Electronics and Information technology: the city is home to the headquarters of Nintendo, Kyocera, Shimadzu Corp., Nissin Electric, GS Yuasa and more. Tourism and traditional Japanese crafts are other key players in the city’s economy.

Information & Facts

Climate

Kyoto has a humid subtropical climate (Köppen Cfa), featuring a marked seasonal variation in temperature and precipitation. Summers are hot and humid, but winters are relatively cold with occasional snowfall. Kyoto's rain season begins around the middle of June and lasts until the end of July, yielding to a hot and sunny latter half of the summer. Kyoto, along with most of the Pacific coast and central areas of Japan is prone to typhoons during September and October. - Wikipedia

Getting Around

The sheer size of the city of Kyoto, and the distribution of tourist attractions around the periphery of the city, makes the city's public transport system invaluable. The city has two subway lines, The Tozai Line (east to west), and the Karasuma-dori Line (north to south). Both are useful for travel in the city center but not really suitable for temple-hopping.

The bus network in Kyoto is another great way to reach many attractions and has Japanese as well as English announcements and signage. There are two different bus companies in Kyoto – the green-and-white Kyoto City Buses for exploring within the city, and the red-and-white Kyoto Buses travel to connect suburbs.

Cycling around Kyoto is not an uncommon way of getting around. It’s economical, environmentally friendly, and easily supported by the city’s flat and well maintained roads. There are various bike rental shops in Kyoto.

Language

Japanese is the de facto national language of Japan. The dialect spoken in Kyoto is known as Kyō-kotoba or Kyōto-ben, a constituent dialect of the Kansai dialect. When Kyoto was the capital of Japan, the Kyoto dialect was the de facto standard Japanese and influenced the development of Tokyo dialect, the modern standard Japanese.

Money

The Japanese yen (JPY) is the official currency of Japan. It is the third most traded currency in the foreign exchange market after the United States dollar and the euro. Coins in circulation are are 1, 5, 10, 50, 100 and 500 yen. The 5 and 50 yen coins have a hole in the middle. Banknotes are denominations of 1, 000, 5, 000 and 10, 000. Although the 2, 000 yen notes are in existence, they are only seen rarely. Many Japanese ATMs don’t accept foreign-issued cards and credits cards are not universally accepted in Japan.

Shopping

Kyoto features a unique mix of shopping, where modern, high end fashion shops can be found alongside stores with centuries of history selling traditional Kyoto crafts or specialty foods. This is well expressed in the city's largest shopping district along Shijo Street at the heart of central Kyoto.

Time

Japan Standard Time (JST) is the standard timezone in Japan, and is 9 hours ahead of UTC (UTC+09:00). There is no daylight saving time and it is the same as Korean Standard Time, Indonesian Eastern Standard Time and Yakutsk Time.

  • Thu, 19 Oct

    Light rain. Morning clouds. Mild.

    68 | 57 °F

    Light rain. Morning clouds. Mild.

    85 %  Chance of Precipitation

  • Fri, 20 Oct

    Light rain. Afternoon clouds. Mild.

    67 | 58 °F

    Light rain. Afternoon clouds. Mild.

    51 %  Chance of Precipitation

  • Sat, 21 Oct

    Tons of rain. Mostly cloudy. Mild.

    63 | 59 °F

    Tons of rain. Mostly cloudy. Mild.

    90 %  Chance of Precipitation

  • Sun, 22 Oct

    Tons of rain. Mostly cloudy. Cool.

    61 | 57 °F

    Tons of rain. Mostly cloudy. Cool.

    90 %  Chance of Precipitation

  • Mon, 23 Oct

    More sun than clouds. Mild.

    65 | 56 °F

    More sun than clouds. Mild.

    19 %  Chance of Precipitation

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