Travel Diary: Kyoto, Japan

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This post will be as short and sweet as the trip itself but I had to share some pics and amazing vintage stores. A week after my beautiful Bali trip ended I headed to Kyoto for the weekend, complete opposites in more than one way. We landed in Osaka to find a light dusting of snow on the ground. Needless to say I was panicking – snow does not make for good marathon running weather ( the reason I was there). Trying to keep my cool we boarded the train that takes you to Kyoto Station and from here we took their version of the underground to our accommodation. We were staying down the smallest street in the cutest traditional Japanese style home that we found on airbnb. The marathon was on the Sunday so we had the whole day Saturday to explore the city while I still had power in my legs.

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Despite the rain we managed to see quite a lot and enjoy some yummy eats. I absolutely loved Kyoto, there were sightings of Geishas, the smallest Scottish bar ran by a whiskey loving Japanese man and vintage stores galore. Not to mention the food. Food was good.

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I managed to hit three vintage stores, I wanted pretty much everything especially the homewares but had to refrain due to lack of luggage (and cash, haha). There was Chicago which was the first one I came across down Teramachi. They had everything from dresses to denims and some pretty Kimonos. Next we wandered (read: I dragged the boy) into Roger’s, this was where I fell in love with glassware, beer signage, round suitcases…I could go on. They also had a lot of clothing and shoes for both girls and boys. Finally, using some of the free wifi (we were the awkward looking tourists, hovering around) we managed to get the location of Hanjiro a vintage store I read about online. A few minutes later (thank you google maps) we arrived at the coolest vintage shop I’ve ever been to.

Bath tubs filled with fish, old stained glass windows and chandelier heaven, it took me awhile to focus on the clothing. I didn’t leave this store empty handed, I picked up an old navajo style blanket and this beautiful red scarf. I love it, i’ve worn it multiple times since (actually wearing it as I type).

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For antique homewares there was blue Parrot which had two stores at either end of Marutamachi Street. Worth checking out for sure.

Onto Race Day where I took to the roads of Kyoto to run 26.2 miles. I was incredibly nervous and wasn’t sure if I was going to manage it. I wanted to finish in under 5 hours (due to lack of training), my target time was 4.30.

With the help of the amazing crowd (I love Japanese people, this became my mantra as I was running round) and an eclectic playlist (90s music never sounded so good) I managed to meet my target. It was as mentally gruelling as it was physically, but I did it and I am proud. I told myself I would never do it again, but then I entered the NYC Marathon draw. And I was accepted. I am a glutton for punishment.

I heart you Kyoto, take me back.   xoxo

All photos taken with my iPhone with exception of me running – courtesy of Kyoto Marathon.

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