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Nara - Another Old Capital where Japan's heart is still alive

Long before Kyoto started to flourish as Japan's national capital of Heiankyo in 794, there was another place where, in fact, the foundation of Japan had already been established. That place is Nara, another ancient capital, which has so much to offer with numerous excellent cultural and natural heritage sites, that have remained unchanged for over 1,300 years.

Nara is home to a number of World Heritage Sites. In the central city area, there are: Todai-ji Temple, Kofuku-ji Temple, Kasuga Taisha Shrine, Gango-ji Temple and Mt. Kasuga Primeval Forest. All of them are within walking distance of each other and each will impress you with their stunning dignity and beauty.

Lovely and Friendly Deer

Nara Park will fascinate you with its historical cultural assets combined with the area's rich natural beauty. The park's roaming deer are a sacred symbol of Nara. They are extremely friendly and tame although they are still wild. Come meet and even feed them with deer crackers!

Delightful Cafe Moment

Wakakusa's walls are full of the joyful messages of diners from around the world.

''Wakakusa'' is a refreshing, soothing green color as well as the name of Nara's symbolic landmark, Mt. Wakakusa. But there is another must-not-miss ''Wakakusa.'' Cafe Wakakusa is the place where everyone can unwind and meet new friends regardless of where you are from and which language you speak! Try their original drink and food items and share your joy on their walls!

Seasonal crepe (1,100 yen) & cafe mocha (500 yen)

Cafe WAKAKUSA: Open: 9:00-19:00; Closed irregularly; Tel: 0742-95-4554; www.cafewakakusa.com

Unique Gift Items
Shop TABI-JI's tabi shoes and socks present respect for Japanese tradition, a unique fashion sense, and allow for the feet’s natural movement by separating the big toe from other toes.

Tabi Shoes ''UROKO (Green)'': 16,200 yen

Sarou Half Time is a pleasant cafe serving tea, coffee, sweets and unique souvenir items. Takayama chasen (bamboo tea whisks) are traditional handicrafts of Nara and have been used in tea ceremonies for over 500 years. ''Asukaze'' tea whisks are a wonderful souvenir choice.

Chasen ''Asukaze'' tea whisk: 3,240 yen

Shop TABI-JI Sanjo: Open: 11:00-19:00; Closed Wed.; Tel: 0742-26-3588; www.tabi-ji.jp; International shipping OK

Sarou Half Time: Open: 10:00-17:00; Find them on the Facebook: ''Cafe La Pause - Todaiji''

Access to Nara from Kyoto

By JR Train, take the Miyakoji Kaisoku Express (approx. 45 min.)
To learn more about Nara, visit official English websites