Japan Trip day 12: Fushimi Inari

In my previous post, I forgot to mention that I actually recieved a birthday present from Ronald, the Canadian that came shopping with me in Osaka. It happened close to the end of our shopping where we spotted some Nanoha and Fate bags for sale in a random doujin shop. I’m quite a fan of the “”Magical Girl Lyrical Nanoha” anime series, so I was really happy to receive them as a present.

By the way, on the day before my birthday, I went to Lashinban and bought myself a Dollfie Dream dol. I bought the cheapest one, although that still was about 55,000 yen (650AU~). The doll is from the anime “Deeper than dawning blue (Yoake mae yori Rurina iro de)” and is of the character Estel. I actually don’t know much about the anime or game it’s based on, but I liked it better than the other dolls for sale, so I chose this one.

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Today was the day I planned to explore Kyoto, so I left Namba to go to Umeda station and changed to the JR train to Kyoto. However, before I left, I had some Hokkaido croquette after the hotel’s breakfast of a boiled egg and potato salad.


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I had eaten the croquettes at this small shop before, however this was the first time for the trip. I was just as I remembered, really tasty.

I also have been to Kyoto before, although I haven’t seen all of the site seeing spots yet. To tell the truth, I’m kinda tired of looking at temples, however there was one scene in a manga called “Magical Teacher Negima” which feature a snippet of the characters running through the red gates of Fushimi Inari, so I decided I wanted to visit that place.

When in the train headed to Fushimi Inari, I took a few photos of the passing scenery as it seemed to be nice enough to use for backgrounds for when I make my own visual novel game. Making my own game is still a distant dream, but it is still something that I’d like to do some day.

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The town that Fushimi Inari is located in is actually a much quieter place than I expected. It was one of those places that you could take your time walking around exploring and appreciating the scenery. Of course theree were many souvenir shops but I didn’t really buy much from there. I just enjoyed the scenery around me as I headed towards the shrine.

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After walking for 10 mins, I reached the shrine.

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I had always thought that Fushimi Inari was just a place with never ending red gates lined up one after another, but it seems that there are also a few temples there too.

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When I entered the shrine, I finally got to see some red gates lined up.

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According to the manga, the red gates were lined up on flat ground, so I thought that was the case in real life, but in reality, I’d say that about 90% of it was on a stone stairway eitheer going up or downhill. It actually is a staircase that goes up the side of a mountain and down again. It was a humid summer day, so it was quite a exhausting and at the same time interesting experience. There were places throughout the path to rest, grab a drink or ice cream and take a break. Also there were some small shrines throughout the path as well. I even found a sacred tree that was used to wishing for good health.

I actually wanted to walk through it slowly and enjoy the scenery, but there were so many mosquitos that I couldn’t stop at all and had to just keep myself moving to keep them away. Thanks to that, I think I nearly died climbing all those stairs. They seemed to go on forever. However after managing to get to the halfway point, the stairs then went downhill for the rest of the way. Well, actually it did go up and down a bit afterwards. (^^;)

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After a while, I finally made it out to the other exit of the gate pathway. After exiting the path, there was a really breathtaking overlook of the city. It really was a unforgettable experience. However, I probably won’t attempt doing it again. It was really exhausting, and my shirt was soaked in sweat. Also there was no wind that day. If you do decide to take a trip to Fushimi Inari, please make sure you don’t follow my example and go in the middle of summer on a humid day.

Afterwards, I went to have lunch at one of the stores near the shrine and ordered some Oyako-don and ate it while sitting on the nice tatami seats in the store. Actually while I was still climbing down the stairs on the way back, I received a call from Ronald. He was staying at a hotel in Kyoto at that time, so he invited to show me all the anime shops in Kyoto. So after lunch, I quickly went to Kyoto to meet up with him and be shown around. He was with his friend Max, and we went to Kyoto’s Animate, Gamers and other anime stores to do some shopping. Then after all our shopping, we spent a few hours in one of the video game arcades trying our hand at the skill testers (UFO catchers) trying to win all the anime goods from the machines.

Ronald was actually very good at the UFO catchers, so he was getting all the cool prizes one after another. Max and I simply had the role of changing money into coins so Ronald could win more stuf for us.  (^^;)

Well, at the end, I did give it a shot, and found that I was actually good at the UFO catchers where the prizes hung by a piece of string, and you’d direct a lever to catch over the string and try to pull it down. For some reason I did fairly well at it and managed to win a few things too.

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By the way, while enjoying ourselves at the UFO catchers, we met up with Disastorm (sorry I forgot your real name (^^;)). He also was addicted tot he UFO catchers and we had a great time there together.


Since we had spent quite a bit of time at the video arcades, I had to rush off to the trainstation to catch the last train back to Osaka. Unfortunately although I got onto the last train, by the time I reached the JR Osaka station, I had already missed the last subway to Namba, so I had to end up catching a taxi to get back to the hotel.

Once I got back, I went to get some dinner. Since we had som much fun at the arcades, we had totally forgot about eating (^^;) I decided to eat at Yoshinoya. I ordered some Sukiyaki beef. It is of course winter food, but it sure tasted good even during summer.

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When I got back to the hotel, I took some photos of the shopping I did in Kyoto. I bought the 2008 Animelo Concert Blu-ray disc, K-on tea, Prizes from the UFO catchers (Azusa clock and anime lighters), K-on clear posters, souvenirs from Fushimi Inari and so on.


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By the way, when I was waiting at Kyoto to meet up with Ronald, I went up Kyoto Tower and took many photos of the Kyoto scenery. Unfortunately for some reason, I can’t seem to find any photos of it.. (><).

Oh well, anyways, I had a really enjoyable day.

Comments (1)

SteveJanuary 25th, 2010 at 6:56 pm

I love Fushimi Inari, one of my favourite places that I’ve been to in Japan. That view from near the top of the mountain is truly breathtaking. The day that I was there it had been very overcast, but when we reached that spot the clouds hard parted just in time for the sun to beam down onto the city.

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