Kyoto was founded in 794, and served as Japan’s capital until 1868. The imperial family and upper class citizens lived in the city. It is now one of the largest cities with a population of about 1.4 million people. Because of the unique history, the imperial, renowned artists and craftsman established a high cultural and artistic aesthetic continue to be seen.
Kyoto, the ancient capital of Japan for more than 1000 years, is a city celebrated not only for preserving its original historic buildings and monuments but one in which the traditional arts and authentic atmosphere have also been retained. With 17 UNESCO World Cultural Heritage Sites, Kyoto is a must-see destination, providing a unique experience for all who visit.
Kyoto is located in the center of Japan and is connected with all major Japanese cities by bullet train (Shinkansen). Arriving in Japan at one of the three major international airports, Tokyo, Osaka or Nagoya, it takes only 2 hours 20 mins to reach Kyoto by Shinkansen from Tokyo station, 40 mins from Nagoya station, and 15 mins from Shin-Osaka station, respectively. Kyoto subway provides an easy to use and convenient transport service around the city, with it only taking 20 mins from Kyoto station to the Kyoto International Conference Center (ICC Kyoto).
Summer (June – August) in Kyoto is quite humid, with temperatures reaching 38°C (100.4°F). Bring light clothing like half-sleeve tops and cotton/linen bottoms, but also a long-sleeve top to put on in air-conditioned facilities.
Once you step out from the hotels and the meeting venue the main language will be Japanese. However, since Kyoto is Japan’s prime tourist destination, thus the city has English directional signals in place. Subway & train station and bus stop signs are marked in Japanese, in English, Chinese and Korean.
Many restaurants start having bilingual menus. When you wish to communicate in English, Speak slowly and clearly, so that shop assistants and taxi drivers will understand your needs. There are sightseeing maps and information boards posted throughout the city and direction signs are displayed in Romanized and Japanese versions. In addition, the people of Kyoto are friendly to visitors: if you approach someone on the street for help, you are likely to be assisted with friendly manner.
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