Kyoto is a beautiful Japanese City; my second favorite behind Tokyo, of course. Where travelers get distracted by the bright lights and amusements of Tokyo, Kyoto is home to some incredibly beautiful temples and shrines, exquisitely manicured gardens, and of course amazing food. A much more cultural experience for travelers who are looking for a bit more than just the super-fun times to be had in Tokyo.
Staying in the Arashiyama district, located just a short bike away from some of Kyoto’s renowned ‘tourist’ attractions including the Tenryuji Temple, Bamboo Groves and Monkey Park, we were able to experience a different side of Kyoto all together. With a party of 7, a considerably large Japanese-style abode – Sagano House – became our incredible home for the week. We slept on (with several layers of cushioning in between) traditional tatami mat floors and had our own private onsen which overlooked a private Japanese garden with a trickling fountain. Located a short walk from the local train station, we had easy access to the centre of Kyoto which was about 10 minutes away by train.
On the lower level there were 3 large tatami rooms all equipped with plenty of cushions and pillows for us Australian’s who were obviously not used to sleeping on the floor. There was also a large and well-equipped kitchen, expansive bathroom with two showers (and the onsen of course), and a formal sitting room. Upstairs there was a master bedroom with en suite, a laundry and drying room, and another large room that could have been used to sleep at least another 2 people.