Because the attractions in Kyoto are pretty spread out over the city I had to use public transit a lot while I was there, but since I was staying in the eastern part of Kyoto I could more easily reach places like Kyomizudera Temple. The temple grounds are fairly large so be ready to spend at least an hour there if you want to see everything. Kyomizudera’s main hall was covered for restoration work when I visited but you could still walk around inside it. The hall’s famous wooden stage was not covered and you could stand out there to look out on the rest of the temple complex. There’s an old legend that says if you jump off the stage and survive the fall to the ground (which is about 42 feet below the stage) then you will get a wish granted. I’m guessing that the local government would prefer that no one test this legend. Interestingly, the stage and the entire main hall are built without any nails.
Below the main hall you can visit Otowa Waterfall and taste some of its waters. The waterfall is split into three streams with each one conveying a different form of luck. I took a sip from the middle stream but I don’t know which kind of luck that one is supposed to give.
Before leaving I also checked out the various shrines that are behind the main hall. Some of them reminded me of the shrines at Fushimi Inari and next to one of the shrines are a pair of rocks that are about 60 feet apart. If you can find your way from rock to the other with your eyes closed this means you will be lucky in finding romantic love.