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Countryside near Kyoto

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Suburb of Houston
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Countryside near Kyoto

Hello friends, I am a woman travelling alone to Kyoto for late Oct-early Nov 2014 sort of on a whim, and after researching it I realize I don't want to be in a city that long. Can you make suggestions for places to explore for 2-3 days at a time near Kyoto or Osaka? I am hoping to see some nature (oceanside, hills, peaceful gardens, I'm not picky), some temples or shrines, eat some great food and experience some Japanese culture (current or historical). I looked on previous forums and I saw some good ideas (Wakasa, Kayabuki-no-sato-Kitamura, Kinosaki) but the reviews are all in Japanese. I would consider a tour although I've never taken one before. Also any suggestions on choosing a medium price ($300ish) ryokan in Kinosaki or Miyama-cho) would be helpful. Thank you!

Tokyo, Japan
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1. Re: Countryside near Kyoto

travel.rakuten.com/eapp/areaSearch.do…

…rakuten.com/hotel/…yunohana.html

Japan
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2. Re: Countryside near Kyoto

I haven't actually been here but I found this place while looking up campgrounds one day:

miyama-kyoto-kajikaso.com/english/…

Hadano, Japan
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3. Re: Countryside near Kyoto

Please look here.

http://www.japan-guide.com/e/e3985.html

http://www.japan-guide.com/e/e3525.html

jnto.go.jp/eng/…wakasawan.html

I saw on TV, but I think is good also Ine.

http://slow-ine.jp/english/

Water front inn yosa-so has been broadcast on television.

http://slow-ine.jp/english/funaya-stay/

Tokyo, Japan
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4. Re: Countryside near Kyoto

Well, if you are willing to go way up to Kinosaki, now's a good time to extoll the virtues of Amanohashidate, considered one of the three most scenic places in Japan by the Japanese. Seems most people automatically opt for Kinosaki Onsen from Kyoto, which is actually a bit farther away. While Kinosaki is one of the better onsens in Japan, there are more diverse things to do in Amanohashidate, and the ryokans there are second to none, expecially if you can book one along the canal next to the rotating bridge, which you can view outside your room window.

Some may disagree with Miyajima, Matsushima, and Amanohashidate as being the top three most beautiful places in Japan, but remember, the spot must have significant tourist infrastructure such as ryokans, gift shops, and a 'core' area to walk around and linger, so something like Mt. Fuji is out. A place like Kinkakuji would be too small.

In a nutshell, there is a pine grove, sandy beaches, a mountaintop observatory, a boat tour of the bay, and several venerable temples and shrines in Amano. You can rent a bike and ride across the sand spit. Seafood is superb, and it's one of the two best places in Japan for flounder, which will be cooked to perfection at a ryokan:

http://www.amanohashidate.jp/lang/en.html

travel-around-japan.com/k62-92-amanohashidat…

Outside of Japanese holidays, Golden Week, or Obon, it shouldn't be too difficult to book either of the two ryokans with a view of the rotating bridge; I think I paid <20,000 yen/night. Of this list, I think Taikyourou and Mojusou are next to the canal:

www.jnto.go.jp/ja-search/eng/list.php…

Suburb of Houston
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5. Re: Countryside near Kyoto

DanL917, thank you for the wonderful suggestions. You certainly have my back! And thank you to everyone else. I'll do some research tomorrow and I may follow up.

Seattle
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6. Re: Countryside near Kyoto

Tsumago and Magome, both on the Nakasendo Road, up closer to the mountains. Not really "near" Kyoto, but only a few hours away by train. They're both tiny villages that are still very traditional. You can take a very nice hike in the woods between the two of them. Visiting was one of the highlights of our 2012 trip. Highly recommend the food at Fujioto Ryokan (also recommend staying there, but I think they serve food to the public as well).

Kyoto, Japan
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7. Re: Countryside near Kyoto

In old days, cities must have been guarded for enemy attacks. So Kyoto is a historical city surrounded by hills:

What if you like trekking in one of Kyoto hills: The most popular trekking route is in Kitayama (North Hill) , from Kiyotaki to Takao.

http://www.cyclekyoto.com/takao

What if you do not like hiking;

Many tourists come to ride on Romantic Train

www.sagano-kanko.co.jp/brochure/english.pdf

You can enjoy both Torokko and River Boat if you take Torokko first up to Kameoka, then flow down on river to Arashiyama.

http://www.hozugawakudari.jp/en/history-en

It is a little bit early to see foliage in Kyoto, if you come to the upper stream of the river at Akame Gouge, you may see some foliage in early November.

jnto.go.jp/eng/…akame-48-waterfalls.html

Kyoto to Kintetsu Akameguchi is about one hour and 30 minutes via Kintetsu Kyoto and Osaka lines.

Kyoto in autumn is the high season. Hopefully you will book a hotel room in Kyoto.

Waregem...
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8. Re: Countryside near Kyoto

Sagano Bamboo forest

Kurama - Kibune area, in the northern mountains of kyoto

Koya-san (a bit further away, probably need to stay the night)

Tokyo, Japan
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9. Re: Countryside near Kyoto

Miyama has a typical old Japanese countryside feel; Amano Hashidate is known for its landscape by the sea; Kinosaki Onsen is a historic onsen town worth visiting; Magome and Tsumago are preserved old towns in the hills; Koyasan is a monastery complex in the forested mountains; Ohara, Kurama/Kifune, as well as Takao are suburban Kyoto in the hills with nice natural/historic sites.

I would say an onsen and full course dinner at Kinosaki with perhaps a detour to Amano Hashidate for 2-3 days. I would happily trade that for days in Tokyo.

http://www.kinosaki-spa.gr.jp/global

http://www.amanohashidate.jp/lang/en.html

Edited: 4:18 am, June 22, 2014
10. Re: Countryside near Kyoto

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