Contrary to popular belief, the coolest city in Japan. With a population of roughly 15 million (compared to Tokyo's ~50) Kyoto has a rich history, including being the old capitol of Japan. The Kyoto train station is a feat of human engineering with a 13 floor shopping mall and virtually endless rows of train stops.
Kinkakuji, ginkakuji and higashi honganji are 3 of the most beautiful Japanese temples. Kyoto is generally considered to be a better mix of old Japan and modern Japan. Luckily the Americans were smart enough to rethink their original plan of nuking the city.
People from Kyoto speak a form of Kansai Ben (dialect) and the women are considerably less attractive than Tokyo-women, or Osaka women ;)
I stopped in Kyoto while taking the train from Osaka to Tokyo.
Fast-ass trains in Japan.
The Shinkansen can move at speeds above 250mph, and resemble a airplane on the inside. You can travel extremely long distances very quickly by utilizing the shinkansen, but you pay the price. They're far more expensive than taking a local train.
I felt like I was flying when I rode the shinkansen, watching the small towns fly by at 260mph.