Friday Lens Affair 153

Arashiyama Bamboo Forests

Today I’m featuring a great shot of the Arashiyama Bamboo Grove taken by Cory Calcea from You Could Travel Blog.

Cory is an avid travel writer and UX designer. She is the author of an inspirational travel blog meant to help others fulfil their adventure dreams.

Do follow her on Instagram and Facebook.

Photo Story: Arashiyama Bamboo Grove

They say that walking through the bamboo forests Arashiyama is like stepping into an alien world.

These spectacular groves are located at the foot of the Arashiyama mountains, also known as the Storm Mountains.

Although a popular tourist destination, the bamboo forests are a place of zen, a place which inspires you to just take a break and relax.

Here is a great 2-week Japan itinerary that you can combine with Kyoto.

I too felt the need to quietly sit down by the tall magical stalks and allow the time to just pass by.

It was quiet, and I could only hear birds chittering away. I could feel the wind softly whispering secrets into my ear as I allowed myself to forget about all dins of the world.

As I looked up, I finally understood the reference to the alien world. When the wind blows, the bamboo stalks slowly rock back and forth, creating an elegant movement, a dreamy dance.

I must have spent hours there, thinking, writing, people watching.

When night comes, like shapeshifters, the bamboo groves of Arashiyama become a darker place, filled with mystery and secrets.

The birds’ tweet is now replaced with sounds made by creatures of the night. Everything is static. Even the stalked have stopped their gracious rock to prepare for nightfall.

But the eerie forest is soon illuminated by tiny Japanese lamps. People are finding their way back to the bamboo path and Arashiyama once again, comes back to life. The bamboo forests Arashiyama are mesmerising.

In the hours I spent on the forested path, I learned many Japanese secrets and heard many whispers.

But as my footsteps are nothing more than mere ghosts which disappear in my shadow, I decided to photograph Arashiyama’s soul, at twilight, in its most vulnerable moments.

Bamboo Forest, or Arashiyama Bamboo Grove or Sagano Bamboo Forest, is a natural forest of bamboo in Arashiyama, Kyoto, Japan.

The forest consists of several pathways for tourists and visitors. The Ministry of the Environment considers it a part of the soundscape of Japan.

The Arashiyama Bamboo Grove is one of Kyoto’s top sights and for good reason: standing amid these soaring stalks of bamboo is like being in another world.

You can access it directly from the main street of Arashiyama, a little to the north of the entrance to Tenryu-ji Temple.

There’s just one main path through the grove, which leads slowly uphill. Once you get to the top of the hill, the entrance to the sublime Okochi-Sanso Villa is right in front of you.

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Kumano Nachi Taisha and Nachi Falls, Wakayama, Japan  

Pin Arashiyama Bamboo Grove

14 thoughts on “Friday Lens Affair 153

  1. alex

    Thank you for sharing such an elegantly written and atmospheric piece… bamboo forests certainly give us an expanded awareness, a kind of stillness… even photos and recorded sounds, although I can imagine the real experience being absolutely transcendental! Definitely on my list of places to meditate in! Thanks again!

  2. Kristi

    What a beautiful photo. That is some huge bamboo. I guess I never realized it could grow that tall! Amazing.

  3. Incredible photo and writing about the experience of being in the Arashiyama Bamboo Forests! It’s a very descriptive post that gives you a sense of what it’s like to see and feel the world around in you in this forest.
    Brooke of Passport Couture recently posted…Seasons at the Denver Botanic Gardens Chatfield FarmsMy Profile

  4. What a great photo. I have been in bamboo glades in botanical parks but nothing like this.

  5. We skipped this when we were in Kyoto, but your words and photo make me regret that decision.

    • Oh Dear I have seen so many great pictures from there that I myself wont be skipping it when in Kyoto, but on another side you have a valid reason to go back :)
      Marysia recently posted…Friday Lens Affair #153My Profile

  6. Elaine J Masters

    This is high on my list of places that must be experienced. Had no idea you could enjoy them in the evening too. Sounds mystical!

  7. Very beautiful! I can understand why this is a place of zen. Certain trees take you to a totally relax state.
    Ruth recently posted…Sequoias: Largest Trees in the WorldMy Profile

    • Well said, for me generally trees are very relaxing, being in the forest is always super calming but this look super great!
      Marysia recently posted…Friday Lens Affair #153My Profile

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