After our thru-hike, we made our way to our hotel in the Gion on district and continue out for the night on an urban hike to see the old city lit up during the spring Hanatouro festival. But first dinner!

Japan compared to all our other international travels was a culinary excursion, usually with multiple stops a night. We began it with two hearty bowls of ramen and fried chicken bites on a bowl of rice purchased thru a ticket vending machine.

During the Higashiyama Hanatouro fest, there is a set path with a couple of side streets are lined with LED lanterns and the main temple and pagoda sites are lit up. Be careful not to trip on all the extension cords between the few and far between spread out lanterns along the route!

It definitely had charm but felt like it could have been so much better done with a bit more thoughtfulness to the aesthetic. There was limited consistency to seemingly which shopkeeper chose to put out his lanterns that night, and only a small handful of shops were even open during the hours of the lanterns being lit.

After following the entire lit journey up the hill, you arrive at the final temple/shrine which is lit up in full splendor. To continue on from this point requires paying an entrance fee but from a visual perspective having some distance was all that you needed to enjoy it.

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