Kyoto was once the imperial capital of Japan; today it’s a bustling city filled with the perfect mixture of industry and culture. Located in a valley surrounded by three mountains, Kyoto’s climate ranges from cold snowy winters to stiflingly hot and humid summers. Kyoto is known for its numerous temples and shrines (1600 Buddhist temples, 400 Shinto shrines); it’s hard to walk down any street or alley without literally running into one. Geiko (geisha) are still a fixture in the city and are frequently hired to perform at special events. Kyoto was definitely a pleasant surprise, only regret — not having more time there.