I am not a morning person, but on my first full day in Kyoto I dragged myself out of bed early and made my way to the western end of the city. This part of Kyoto is called Arashiyama and is where the urban landscape ends and the nearby mountains begin. One of the attractions within Arashiyama is a large bamboo grove with a walking trail that cuts right through the middle of it. During the day the bamboo grove is normally packed but I managed to arrive early enough to experience the grove before most of the tourist crowds showed up. It is possible to get photos of what the bamboo grove looks like without any visitors, but you have to show up at dawn for that. I spent about half an hour at the bamboo grove before moving to explore more of Arashiyama. Most of the rest of my day would be spent out in this western region of Kyoto.
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