Seeing Kyoto

Tokyo may be the capital of Japan, but Kyoto is its heart and soul. The rich textures of twelve centuries of culture seem to have woven themselves into the very air. How else could you explain the centuries-old feel of the Gion quarter, where geisha still ply their trade? Or the quiet dignity of the cobblestone back streets lined with traditional wooden houses?

Seeing Kyoto captures all the elegance and charm of Japan's most beloved city with dozens of stunning images. One can imagine the days when aristocrats and samurai inhabited these neighborhoods. With insightful text, long-time Japan resident Juliet Carpenter delves into the cultural history of Kyoto, as well as its treasures—artistic, culinary, and historical. She also introduces the neighboring city of Nara, often referred to as "little Kyoto." Finally, Carpenter tackles the clash of old and new: how Kyotoites, in their inimitable vigor, are turning the traditions of yesterday into the strengths of today.

With a lyrical foreword by tea master Sen Soshitsu, Seeing Kyoto offers an unparalleled view of one of the world's finest cities. It explores everything from the ancient palaces to sacred temple grounds, classic Japanese gardens to treasured artworks—in short, a deluxe volume not to be missed.