The old imperial capital and cultural heart of Japan.
Historic Kyoto might feel touristy in the season, but some of the "tourist" tourists sights like Arashiyama bamboo forrest or Torii path with a hanging lanterns at Fushimi Inari-Taisha Shrine are simply a must-have worth seeing.
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A third biggest Japan city with cityscapes on par with Tokyo just 3 h away by Shinkansen.
Good alternative for a Japan entry point due its closeness to Kyoto.
The temple with Japan's largest (15 m) bronze statues of Buddha constructed in 752 as the head temple of all provincial Buddhist temples of Japan.
Until recently, Todaiji's main hall, the Daibutsuden (Big Buddha Hall), held the record as the world's largest wooden building, despite the fact that the present reconstruction of 1692 is only two thirds of the original temple hall's size.