For lunch, visited Gion "Izuju". It is located opposite Yasaka Shrine.
Had mackerel sushi and horse mackerel sushi. Love this mackerel sushi for its right saltiness and taste. Inari sushi, which wanted to order, is not available during hot summer.
In the afternoon, headed to "Shugakuin Imperial Villa", third facility under management by Imperial Household Agency. This has a vast garden with lower, middle and upper palaces built on the foot of Mt. Hiei, designed by Emperor Gomizuno himself by making a scale model with clay.
During the period from Keicho to Kanei (end of 16th century to beginning of 17th century), when Katsura Imperial Villa and Shugakuin Imperial Villa were built, there was a growing interest in the dynasty culture favored by the Heian aristocrats in Kyoto, mainly by officials and people of culture. For realizing a royal dynasty's cultural life in which poems, orchestras, pond sailings and dinner parties are portrayed, like life of "Tale of Genji", Imperial Palaces built in the mountain or river areas were the ideal places.
Started the tour at the lower palace. Its tea room, Jugetsukan, is under construction to replace the roof, so can be seen only from outside. Imagined the inside of the main gate of the lower palace.
Looked at the north gate of the lower palace used by servants used as their entrance and the well, and headed to the middle garden.
Looking up at the upper palace, but can't see the building because it is surrounded by woods, and can see beautiful rice fields.
Farmers in the neighborhood cultivate in the Imperial Household Agency's rice field. Rice type is Kinuhikari.
The middle palace is also hidden in the woods.
Along the path to the middle palace, there are 400 red pine trees that have been grown into shrubs with limited height. Pruning is done by a technique called "Gosho watermark" to design the less formal appearances. The round shapes of pine trees are beautiful.
The main gate of the middle palace.
The stairways to Rakushiken and Kyakuden tea rooms start here.
The second gate.
Rakushiken tea room was originally the residence of Emperor Gomizuo's eighth daughter, Princess Teruko Akenomiya.
Kyakuden tea room was the residence of Emperor Gomizuno's wife, Empress Kazuko Tofukumon (Tokugawa).
"Kasumi-dana" shelves are located in Kyakuden tea room of the middle garden. It is one of the Kyoto's three most famous shelves, along with the Katsura Imperial Villa's "Keitana" and the Daigoji temple Sanpoin's "Daigotana".
On the wooden doors, paintings of the Gion festival Yamahoko (decorated floats) of 500 years ago remain beautiful with vivid colors.
Paintings of Yoshino cherry brossums on the sliding doors are just dazzling.
The pass to the upper garden. The signboard says "No Drones".
Onarimon gate of the upper palace.
The upper palace is the biggest highlight of Shugakuin Imperial Villa. Yokuryuchi Pond is located in the center of the circuit style garden. Means dragon looks bathing and taking a break.
Rinuntei tea room on the hill. The view is wonderful.
When Prince Charles and Princess Diana visited the Shugakuin Imperial Villa under the guidance of the Crown Prince (current Emperor of Japan) 34 years ago, they walked up to here and took a rest on this veranda.
Can see the whole city of Kyoto from the upper palace. Rinuntei tea room is 150 meters in elevation and higher than Kyoto Tower (131 meters).
Can see Mt. Atagoyama (west mountains) in the distance, the highest mountain in Kyoto.
Chitosebashi Bridge over the island in Yokuryuchi Pond.
Kyusuitei tea room on the hill of the island. The only building that has not been rebuilt until today. Below the eaves in the south hand writing of "Kyusui" by Emperor Gomizuo is set. Its meaning is keeping calm.
The outside view is beautiful, and the room is designed so that Emperor Gomizuo and his guests could enjoy the scenery by putting their elbows on the window shelves.
The upper palace seen from the west shore of Yokuryu Pond. It is a famous place for autumn leaves, and the autumn leaf colors reflected on the surface of the water are said beautiful. Next time should come back in Autumn.
From the upper palace, can see the whole view of Shugakuin Imperial Palace and Kyoto city. The left hand is the middle palace and the right hand is the lower palace. Each palace is surrounded by woods and designed to be invisible.
Shugakuin Imperial Villa were built by Emperor Gomizuno with the financial resources of his wife's family, Tokugawa Shogun family. According to the guide, the Emperor started the construction of the villa, which is eight times as large as Katsura Imperial Villa, at the age of 58 and completed it at the age of 64. What a great passion of his!
However, Emperor Gomizuno lived in Kyoto Sento Imperial Palace and just visited here but never lived here.
Can't imagine how energetic and powerful the Emperor was. He lived the second longest next to Emperor Hirohito and had many children.
At night, headed to "Kappo Takohachi", a small restaurant on Takoyakushi Street. A hidden restaurant that visited many times every time came to Kyoto and the owner chefs of other prominent restaurants in town visit after closing.
The restaurant is conservative and has no URL, and its menu is posted to show only ingredients. Can't see seasonal ingredients, the essence of Kyoto cuisine, without asking to the chef, so need to visit several times until get used to it, but the quality and taste are top notch.
⭐️ "Kappo Takohachi" is now awarded Bib gourmand in Michelin Guide Kyoto 2021. Heard they have declined to publish so far, but first of all, Congratulations 🥳.
The next morning, stopped at Naramachi Town and purchased a red monkey amulet, which imitates a messenger of Koshin, the Chinese religion.
Most houses in Naramachi Town are hanging red monkey amulets at their eaves so that no troubles enter the houses. Can't see some in the shadow, but all the houses are hanging it.
Naramachi Town was built on the original large precinct of the world heritage "Gankoji Temple". Genkoji is former "Asukadera Temple", the first Buddhism temple built by Soga no Umako in 606, and was moved here and renamed in 718 along with the relocation of the Heijokyo (Nara) capital. The roof tiles of that time are still used.
Summertime of Naramachi Town is always very hot.
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