欢迎,你好!Sweet Chili is where I want to talk about art, photography, fashion, family, food, culture, traveling and other significant little things in my life. Any use of the pictures in the blog is welcome, as long as I'm aware of it and there's a clear reference to my site. 如需使用博客中的图文,只要标明来源到这里,我都非常欢迎!

I use English because I'm lazy, and this is a blog based on my other account with Blogger, link: www.sweetchilifashion.com. 我会在一些地方添加中文翻译或者新内容,但主体还是会和英文版博客相同。

冬季日本之行2/9----伏见稻荷大社,值得去吗到底?

不论值不值得,我总之是第二次去了。

总结了去之前可以考虑借鉴的问题。如果这几点想通了,伏见稻荷绝对是非常值得好好一去,并且拍出漂亮的照片的。

先问问自己是只想去拍照,还是想去体会神社香火旺盛的氛围,顺便爬爬山。如果去伏见稻荷的唯一目的只有拍照,那么我可能不建议你为这么一点特地去一趟。京都好玩好看好吃的东西很多,而伏见稻荷不在市中心,需要专程去。而且作为京都连续几年统计观光客最多的景点,能让你拍到没有其他有人在背后(或面前)人头攒动的照片,几乎没有可能。即使等待时机,排除万难的拍到了,恐怕也不会给你的这趟游览经历加分。还不如花这个时间去一些景色同样好看,但游人显至的小寺庙。

其次一旦决定去了,在条件可能的情况下,最好选择天微微亮的清晨,在大批游览者到达之前,先去把漂亮的照片拍了,并且感受一下j宁静的寺庙,和呼吸最新鲜的凉爽空气。空无一人,延绵上山的红门在照片里还是非常壮观出效果的。如果是有摄影方面的执着的人,能拍到这样的景色,京都就算没白去了。

除此之外,能花上两个小时左右,爬上山顶,就更是另一种享受。大多数人只会去到山脚下最开始的一小段红门,殊不知沿路上山,红门一直蔓延到山上很远的地方。往上稍微走走,就会发现身边的同行人越来越少,这时也是拍照的好时机。可如果摄影不是你喜欢的项目,光是登山看景,呼吸身边古树青苔的香气,就也是身心灵的享受了。半山腰的茶室,半隐半藏在树木之间,乍一看像一个树屋。口渴了在这里稍作休息,看窗外山上的行人慢慢登上来,树影摇动小鸟轻吟,时间在这里应该是走慢了半拍。

Fushimi Inari, if you don't recognise the name, you might recall seeing a picture of endless red gates prolonging into the mountain somewhere, and most like have wowwwed or awwwwed at it. It is statistically proved to be the most visited attraction of Japan for the past 5 years. And it indeed is on the itinerary of every tourist visiting Kyoto. 

This time is my second time visiting the Fushimi Inari. And of course, like the first time, I was joined by no less than a few hundreds of fellow visitors at the shrine, hoping to get a glance, or if lucky, a photo of the famous, undeniably picturesque red gates. 

If somehow Kyoto happens to be in your travel plan this, or the coming couple of years, I've got a few tips from my own experience, about visiting(or not) the Fushimi Inari.

Is it worth a visit?

It totally depends on what you want to get out of it. For all the pictures you might have seen on all the travel magazines of Pinterest: that red serpentine going up the mountain, mysterious yet serene...well, chances are, you'll not be able to see quite the same when you visit. Like I've said, it is the most visited attraction in Japan in the recent years. Unless you go there really early in the morning to beat crowd(like around 6pm?), you'll for sure be joining the biggest crowd, each and everyone trying to get a good shot of the famous scene, just as you. If the only goal for your visit is to get a good photo, then I suggest you to make some extra effort and get up before sunrise; or, just give it up and visit the hundreds other equally tranquil and beautiful temples in Kyoto. 

Having said that, it is still possible to enjoy yourself visiting the Fushimi Inari. The mountain behind the shrine actually goes on quite a bit. Many visitors, due to their tight schedules, can only spare no more than half an hour/1 hour on the visit. But if you can afford to spend longer, the hike to the top of the mountain, with more gates going all the way up, and an almost surreal, tree-house like pit stop tea house halfway, is both physically and mentally rewarding. Not to mention, that way you'll find yourself surrounded by very few others. And the original feeling you got from seeing the photos will actually come back to you after passing the initial crowds. 

What's the best time to go, and how long should you spend on it?

Following from the first point, if you do decide to pay a visit, either get up real early and  be there before everyone, or you'd better be prepared to lower your expectation. If you have time to spare, try to allocate more time on Fushimi Inari, and make it into a half-day hiking trip. Although the urge to tick off as many "must-see" attractions as possible is strong. I can assure you that going deep into, and really understand one place is much more rewarding, and later on more memorable than having a hundred pictures of places you don't even remember going to.

What else is there, other than the chance to take photos of the red gates(and most probably with a dozen fellow visitors in the picture)?

Fushimi Inari is located just a little out from the main city bits of Kyoto. You can either take a train, or with a taxi it won't cost you much at all too. There are plenty of cafes and eateries, souvenir shops developed around the shrine. But just within the shrine itself, there's a nice tea room serving light meals and local favourites too. The location is dreamy, hidden half way up the mountain, among the forest. You'll feel like you've been topped up with oxygen once you've sat down. I highly recommend a visit. Or, if you decide not to climb up all the way there, the street food stalls just by the entrance of the shrine are decent enough for a quick bite too. Just be adventurous and try something new, like it or not, it'll definitely add to your experience of visiting the Fushimi Inari(although you'll most likely fall in love straight away). 


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