People from all around travel to Kyoto during autumntime to see the gorgeous red foliage of fall (known as “koyo”). We’ve compiled a list of the best places to see this enchanting scenery right now.
“Yanagiya Kannon Koyo Week”
Yanagiya Kannon is located in Nagaokakyo in Kyoto and has been a gathering place for people with eye-related diseases since the Heian Period. An event to celebrate the autumn leaves will be held there titled “Yanagiya Kannon Koyo Week.” Joshoin is a special are where only certain designated guests, such as the Emperor’s family and those in the court aristocracy, can enter. The captivating view of the autumn leaves of Meishoteien (Jodoen) has come to be loved by countless people.
Full Details: http://www.moshimoshi-nippon.jp/74979
Enjoy the red foliage from the “Genko-an Temple”
Situated in Takagamine is the Genko-an Temple from which you can relax, sit down and take in the colours of autumn. The Genko-an is famous for its two large windows: the round window titled “The Window of Enlightenment” and the square window named “The Window of Confusion.” The best time to visit is just before the koyo is in full bloom as the stunning gradation of the maple trees will have you losing track of time in a spellbinding daze. You can enjoy gazing at the koyo from inside so you don’t have to worry about potential rainfall.
“Giō-ji Temple” – Located in Saga near Arashiyama
This place isn’t popular for having a grand and majestic temple, but rather a quiet, tucked away temple surrounded by a luxuriant moss garden. When you look up at the trees, the sky is completely covered by the colours of autumn. Together with its rural location, you really feel as if you have been wrapped in autumn red. When compared to the center of Arashiyama, it’s even more leisurely. And when autumn comes to a close, the falling leaves (known as “Chiri Momiji”), is an indescribable kind of beautiful.
Witness koyo in the morning at “Hōgon-in”
Hōgon-in opens its gates at 9am. In the serene spectacle of the morning hour, the colours of maple trees are reflected tenfold. Red covers the entire picture before you as the maple spreads itself all the way from the entrance, creating a tunnel of trees, and extends to the Shishiku Garden, a place of defining radiance. In the evening, the red leaves cover the moss, creating a breathtaking botanical blanket. You must make it a priority to wake up early in the morning to witness the koyo when the gates open.
Enjoy Kyoto’s autumn colours from a boat
HOSHINOYA Kyoto is holding an exciting program called “Asa no Momiji Fune” for people staying at the accommodation. You can look forward to enjoying a blissful sail down the Ōi River in a gorgeous boat to bask in the beautiful autumn scenery. While cruising on the boat, you can enjoy tucking into some delicious traditional Japanese autumn sweets and tea while gazing at the spectacular autumnal scenery of Ogurayama and Arashiyama. You will be able to appreciate the true elegance of Kyoto’s fall season, something which has long been maintained, with its lush and colourful blossom. It’s an indispensable opportunity to really get up close and personal with Japan’s nature.
Full Details: http://www.moshimoshi-nippon.jp/57764
500 meters altitude, World cultural heritage from the sky
“HOSHINOYA Kyoto” are setting up a tour called “Koyo Heli Cruise” where you’ll have the chance to ride a helicopter and view Kyoto and its world heritages from the sky. It’s also an opportunity to see the koyo from a completely different perspective as it covers the land like a red carpet. Once you reach 1500 feet (about 500m), you can enjoy the historical buildings of Kyoto such as Kiyomizudera, Kinkakuji and Nijojo – not to mention the fall colors of Arashiyama.
Are you spoilt for choice on where to go? Each location has its own distinct beauty. Be sure to keep this list as reference when you go out in Japan this fall.