Kansai is the middle area of Japan, containing the famous cities of Osaka, Nara, and Kyoto. Earlier this year I went to Kyoto (2x) and Nara with some old friends in order to hang out and also visit some shrines and temples.
I mentioned hatsmoude 初詣earlier in a blog, which is where you go to a shrine or temple for New Years. I went to these above places and was able to do hatsumoude there. Kyoto and Nara are both very famous for being traditional places of Japan and having many beautiful culture sights. Both have some gorgeous shrines and temples perfect for this occasion. At first I went to Kyoto with some friends from my city just because we hadn’t seen each other in a while. At New Year’s though Kyoto is insanely packed, especially around the culture sights. Kyoto is just such a beautiful city, it doesn’t matter what time of year you go things will always look pretty nice. Some people think it is overrated as so many tourists go, but I have been many, many times and still think it is just such a stunning city.
Nara is another city well known for being traditional. Kyoto is defiantly more famous, but Nara is also rather well known. In Nara you will find many deer that just wander around the city and temples. It is quite the cute site. Most of them are very docile and you can even feed them. It’s a great town for walking around in and has quite a different feel from Kyoto and especially Osaka. Nara is defiantly a more of a small town comparatively to those two. I really enjoy the shrines at Nara though and they are great places to go for pictures. My friend and I just did a lot of walking and shrine visiting and wrapping it up with some food. I’ve been to this city quite a few amounts of times as well and I always enjoy it.
Kansai is one of the most popular places for travelers to visit because there is so much within the area. Tokyo is a little far, but with all the variety you can find in Kansai you won’t need much more. If you enjoy seeing a more cultural side of Japan make sure to come to the heart of it here in Kansai, peace.