UNESCO World Heritage Site #15: Historic Monuments of Ancient Kyoto

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UNESCO World Heritage Site #15: Historic Monuments of Ancient Kyoto

UNESCO World Heritage Site #15: Historic Monuments of Ancient Kyoto

From the World Heritage inscription:

Built in A.D. 794 on the model of the capitals of ancient China, Kyoto was the imperial capital of Japan from its foundation until the middle of the 19th century. As the centre of Japanese culture for more than 1,000 years, Kyoto illustrates the development of Japanese wooden architecture, particularly religious architecture, and the art of Japanese gardens, which has influenced landscape gardening the world over.

If you can only visit one place in Japan, the place to visit is Kyoto. The former imperial capital of Japan, there are seventeen different temples, shrines and buildings in the Kyoto area which are included in the World Heritage property, and that technically doesn’t include the former Imperial Palace (which is still owned and run by the Japanese royal family) or the Fushimi Inari Shrine.

I’d suggest spending at least three days in Kyoto as the attractions are rather spread out and Kyoto is a large city. There are many other, smaller buildings of historical note throughout the city which might be worth visiting. Kyoto has a subway, so getting around is pretty easy.

View my complete list of UNESCO World Heritage sites.

  • 4 Comments... What's your take?

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Comments

  1. Japan remains a fascinating place for so many reasons. It’s amazing how an island can dominate a region economically for so many years based on ideas and innovation instead of natural resources.

  2. Roland Smith says:

    Kyoto is a delightful place that we’ve been able to visit several times. Three day’s time is barely adequate, particularly if nearby Nara is included. Each time I’m there I’m again grateful that the historians and preservationists were able to prevail on the U.S. military leaders to leave Kyoto untouched and un-bombed during WWII. So, unlike many historical places in Germany, Kyoto and Nara survived the war intact.

  3. DrManette says:

    That’s one stunning garden, the Japanese know their stuff.

  4. Cole says:

    I only wish I would have been able to visit Kyoto.

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