We took a day trip on the train from Kyoto to Nara, which is Japan’s first permanent capital, so obviously it has a lot of history. Just before leaving for our holiday, we had caught a BBC documentary on Japan which mentioned Nara and its famous ‘bowing deer’, so we had to go over and have a look!
Lo and behold, when we arrived at Nara park, lots of deer! The warning sign is quite funny too 🙂
Apart from deer, Nara Park is also full of historical buildings which are part of the Kōfuku-ji (a Buddhist temple). The temple comprises the Eastern Golden Hall (Tō-kondō) and five-story pagoda (Gojū-no-tō)…
…the Southern Octagonal Hall (Nan’endō), which I think is a beautiful building…
…and smaller three-story pagoda (Sanjū-no-tō).
The highlight though, I must say, were the deer. You could buy deer biscuits from stalls around the park, and if you bow to them, they will bow back for a biscuit. Other people around us didn’t seem to be aware of this, then they started copying us 🙂
Heading back to Kyoto, we came across these guys at Nara train station. I had no idea what was going on at the time, but after passing the text through a translator after the fact, found out that the banner they are holding says “Welcome to Nara” – which makes perfect sense!