Originally built as a retirement villa for the third Ashikaga Shogun Yoshimitsu in the 1390's, the pavilion is entirely covered in gold leaf and not surprisingly is surrounded by beautful gardens. Kinkaku-ji is said to look particularly exquisite after a snowfall, but it also looks impressive in bright sunshine.
More photos of Kinkaku-ji
We returned to The city centre by JR bus and saw an interesting method of collecting the fare. Passengers enter the bus via the rear door, take a numbered ticket from a small dispenser and then consult an illuminated board at the front of the bus which displays the fare. Passengers then pay the driver when they alight. At first we were a bit worried by this as we had neglected to take a ticket on boarding, but realized it was a JR bus and used our rail pass!
After all these adventures there was still daylight so we walked from the hotel down to Nishiki Market to buy a knife for Andrew from Aritsugu (they've been making and sling knives there for hundreds of years apparently). Whilst Aritsugu were just closing lots of shops were still open so we purchased some supplies for a 'light' dinner in the hotel room.
-- Post From Geoff's iPhone