St Edmund's

Japan 2023 – Day 6

Day 6

Today, we traveled south to Kyoto, the ancient city and former capital of Japan. Three bus rides and two trains (including a second ‘flight’ on the Shinkansen) brought us to the hotel just after five o’clock.

After a quick turn around, we took the subway to the downtown district for supper. Mr Kincaid, guidebook in hand, led the group to what The Lonely Planet guide described as a famous street with the most ‘atmosphere’ and culinary delights ‘in all Asia’. 

In fact, it was a long, narrow alley, full of light and colour; the way was packed with local families and tourists – all there to sample some of the most appealing Japanese dining we had seen. Beautiful dark wood-fronted buildings, hung with lanterns and slatted sliding doors, teemed with customers sitting at low tables and long bars, behind which troupes of chefs and waiters shouted and flourished in forced kitchen fury. 

The St Eds team was allowed to split into small groups and choose a place to eat. In a flash, they had all disappeared into the night, to return an hour and half later, full literally and metaphorically, of their experiences. The food was unanimously judged to be ‘amazing’. Well done again, Mr Kincaid – another successful day.

Tomorrow, the culture tours begin: ancient and elaborate shrine complexes; collections of traditional art and sculpture; and of course the mysterious Zen raked gravel gardens.  

I think we have all been looking forward to Kyoto; Cameron and the other photographers are particularly excited. 

Me too.