Monkey Business in Kyoto

This morning began like most, eat some breakfast and then off to the train station.  The slight twist was today we got to ride the bullet train, or Shinkansen again!  It took a quick 30 minutes(felt like less) to get to Kyoto from Osaka.

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So many stairs!!!

Upon reaching Kyoto we switched trains and headed for the Arashiyama Monkey Park.  We hiked up a small mountain to get to the site of the monkey feeding house, and got to hang out with Japanese macaque and take in a breathtaking view of Kyoto.  The monkeys are wild of course and numerous signs tell you not to look them directly in the eye or get in their faces.  We spent most of the hike up reminding the kids again and again to make sure they follow the rules.  Especially in light of what happened yesterday in Nara.

We did not experience any more animal related fighting.  My daughter kept clear of the monkeys, and my son told me that one bared its teeth at him and he backed away and left it alone.  We didn’t feed the monkeys, but did go into the shack you’re allowed to feed them from.  You can buy peanuts or apples, and the shack puts steel fencing between you and the monkeys.  It also allows you to safely get really close to them.  We didn’t feed them, but did enjoy seeing them, and loved the view.  The kids favourite part was the beat up playground.  It included a zip line, teeter totters, and a large slide.  Whatever, I thought the monkeys were cool.

Next, we headed down the mountain and stopped for snacks on an island in the river.  We then walked along the river to a park that met up with a bamboo forest and some more temples.  We didn’t go into them today, but did enjoy the park.  The bamboo forest was neat, but really crowded, with people trying to strategically time photos to keep the bulk of the crowd out of them.

Finally we arrived home and the nearby okonomiyaki stand was open, so we picked one up to go with dinner.  It was delicious.  I seriously love this stuff.  The stand I went to was a couple blocks away from Dainichi Station in Osaka.  If you’re in the neighbourhood go there.  It’s cheap and amazing!

Today was our last day in Osaka, and in the morning we head back to Tokyo for the last couple days of our adventure.  I’m looking forward to it.  That bullet train is something else!

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