To be honest, I wasn’t exactly floored by the apparent thousands of temples and shrines within the city of Kyoto. There’s something about paying a fee to go and look at a building that doesn’t sit right with me. Or it could just be that I’m not a massive fan of the architecture in general, or that I live next door to a shrine. Either way, I’d much rather appreciate the beauty of a shrine I happen to come across on some random side-street, than be herded through to take the same posed photos that millions of others before you have taken (then through the gift shop) for 500 yen.
Fushimi Inari was much nicer, in my view. It was free! And I was happy to spend more money on souvenirs and food while I was in the area, as opposed to how I resented being charged to look at temples on previous days, which led to my not wanting to buy anything. Which is to say, Fushimi Inari operates the way I think tourist spots should operate.
Anyway, this is the place with the hundreds of torii gates. There’s a decent number of paths you can wander around, and we were actually disappointed that we didn’t get to spend more than a couple of hours there.
I’m starting to think that unless a building contains some sort of educational aspect (like the museum inside Nagoya castle), I don’t have all that much interest in just looking at buildings. I have no desire to see the Eiffel Tower, I know that much. Maybe I prefer rivers and forests and the history of people, more than the artefacts themselves. And that’s OK.