On sunday me, mum and dad headed off to Kyoto, getting the shinkansen (bullet train) from Tokyo just after 10am and arriving in Kyoto just before 1pm. After dropping our bags at the hotel, we headed straight out to the Ginkaku-ji temple - the silver temple which isn't actually silver any more, but has rather stunning gardens which we wandered around in the afternoon sun.
This then lead us to the Pilospoher's Walk, a 45 minute stroll along a blossom-clad canal which a famous philosopher used to use for his morning meditation. This, like everyhwere else in Kyoto, was heaving with people, but still a lovely way to see the city and soak up the afternoon sun. It ended with the Nanzen-ji temple, a beatiful temple where we got to see monks performing a traditional service.
We headed back to the hotel for a well-needed rest, then headed off through the narrow lanes of Kyoto to Mimasuya, a restaurant overlooking the river where we had tempura and sashimi.
After dinner, we walked to Gion, the geisha district, where there is a beautiful river running past old geisha residences. The blossom was stunning in the evening light.