The owner of the Ginkakuji temple wanted to cover it in silver similarly to what his grandpa had done with the Kinkakuji (the golden temple). The economy was not good at that time and he could never afford the silver to cover it. The temple is still very famous for its beautiful gardens, and one can get a very nice view of Kyoto within a short distance walk in the hillside garden.
The lava flow resulting from the eruption of Asama mountain on August 5 1783 completely buried the village of Kanbara. Today the site is a protected natural park with a temple dedicated to the victims of the eruption.
The Nijo-jo castle was constructed as the Shogun’s residence during the Edo period when the supreme power in Japan was held not by the emperor but the the shogun himself (a sort of military commander). The nice feature of Nijo-jo castle is the nightingale floor. As you walk along, the wooden floor emits a squeaking sound. This was a security device at the time whose purpose was to alert guards to the presence of any intruder in the castle.
The Kinkakuji temple was covered in gold by its owner and because of its unique golden look, is one of the most famous temple in Kyoto. The story tells that the grandson of this man also tried cover a temple in precious metal but because of difficult times he could only use silver, the silver temple (Ginkakuji).
Before Tokyo, the Japanese capital used to be the city of Kyoto. The city still showcases the imperial palace where the emperor and its family used to live. Since no member of the imperial household live in Kyoto anymore, the palace is accessible through a guided tour. One has to register at the palace’s early in the morning with passport in hand. Nowadays, the emperor lives in the imperial palace in Tokyo.