Having arrived in the morning via shinkansen from Yokohama, Ryan and I, after stowing our bags, had already begun our walking mission through Kyoto, with two attractions already ticked off – namely the beautifully ornate and tranquil Shosei-en garden and the imposing Higashi Honganji temple complex.

Next on the list was the tall Kyoto Tower, looming ahead of us all the while, somehow slightly out of place in this seemingly old and culturally rich city of Japan.

DSC07520 ryan lotter taking photos with kyoto tower in the background

But first things first.

Somehow I managed to convince Ryan that we needed to first stop and consume some delicious Baskin Robbins ice cream!

IMG_20141005_151701 baskin robbins ice cream in kyoto

Standing next to the super modern Kyoto Station, Kyoto Tower is an observation tower located in Kyoto, Japan. Opened in 1964, the same year as the Tokyo Summer Olympics and Shinkansen bullet train system were unveiled, this unusually designed steel tower (it is meant to resemble a Japanese candle) is the tallest structure in Kyoto with its observation deck at 100 metres and its spire at 131 metres.

(Interesting fact. Strict building laws intended to preserve the old look and feel of Kyoto means that this tower probably will remain the tallest structure in the city for a good many years to come.)

The 800-ton tower stands atop a 9-story building, which houses a 3-star hotel and several stores. Oh, and it houses a public bath at its base as well!

IMG_20141005_154215 using the telescope at kyoto tower

The tower wasn’t massively busy on the day that we were there, meaning that we enjoyed a leisurely visit soaking up the fantastic 360 degrees views of Kyoto.

IMG_20141005_154601 view of kyoto from kyoto tower

Amazingly, I also managed to convince Ryan to pose with the cutout of Kyoto Tower’s mascot Tawawa-chan.

IMG_20141005_160014 kyoto tower tower-san cutout photo op

As with most observation tower trips, Kyoto Tower is well worth seeking out if you want to get a good look of the city that you’re currently stomping about in! :)

Related Link: Kyoto Tower