When I ask our students at Smith’s School of English, Kyobashi what is their favourite season, majority of them answers spring and autumn. No surprise here. These two seasons are just great in Japan. They’re my favourites too. I live in Kyoto so I can fully appreciate the wonders of Japanese fall.
I really like the fact that in Kyoto the colourful leaves match the historical architecture of the city. It gives the city an amazing feel. And on the other hand the modern, but sensitive architecture of new buildings in the centre of Kyoto fit into the whole atmosphere too. The best examples are probably Shijo – Kawaramachi (四条河原町) and Kiyamachi – Dori (木屋町通), where next to each other stand traditional inns (ryokan), bars, restaurants, shops and department stores. It’s all together in a relatively small area with a lovely canal lined with trees running through. In the autumn night, a walk by the canal where all shops and trees are illuminated is quite something.
The other location worth mentioning at this time of the year is Kiyomizu Temple (清水寺). This temple is one of city’s World Heritage Sites. It’s located on the hills of eastern Kyoto and provides a fantastic view over the city from the famous wooden terrace (Kiyomizu-no-butai, 清水の舞台) standing on 139 enormous wooden pillars. It also has beautiful background scenery which changes with the four seasons. For me personally, autumn here is the best. It was one of the first places I’ve visited here as a tourist many years ago. It was in autumn and it was stunning.
I’m sure that all of you have your own personal ‘best locations to see’, so if you have any suggestion, please let me know.
English Conversation Teacher at Smith’s School of English, Kyobashi (スミス英会話 京橋校).