Nara, like much of Japan, surprised me by how modern it is. The various heritage sites are actually set separately in large grounds surrounded by high-rises and the like. On the grounds reside wild sika deer who have become accustomed to humans descending on mass to these sites. They have also become accustomed to humans feeding them, taking photos of them and petting them.

A baby deer getting used to the wild tourists coming over to pet him.
A baby deer getting used to the wild tourists coming over to pet him.

Further in past the main gate which houses giant wooden guardians is Todaiji. We didn’t go inside however we it was interesting to see the building exterior and the ground it sat on.

Todaiji whilst not the largest wooden building is certainly huge
Todaiji whilst not the largest wooden building is certainly huge

Before heading back to Kyoto we stopped by Inari Jinja which has something close to 10,000 torii gates that head up a 4km path into the mountain. We only went the first 1000 or so gates as the sun had already set and hunger drove us back to Kyoto. It was interesting though.

Inari Jinja is most famous in the West for it's appearance in Memoirs of a Geisha
Inari Jinja is most famous in the West for it’s appearance in Memoirs of a Geisha

We’ll be heading out to Takayama in 20 minutes so I have to keep this short. Mata ne!