|Natural scenery, temples, shrines, towns and homes intermingle with a poignant
historical beauty. Whether it is the Gion Festival, the Tea Ceremony or Japanese
flower arrangement or Nishijin-brocade, so many aspects of characteristic Japanese
culture continue to thrive in Kyoto. Over a period of 1200 years, dating from
the decision to move the capital to Kyoto in 794, it nurtured a splendid, delicate
and unique kind of culture, and over the course of history came to be considered
the mother of culture within Japan.
For this reason, Kyoto is often called "Japan's heartland", and it is
said that it is impossible to know the real Japan without knowing Kyoto.
On the other hand, Kyoto is not simply protecting its old traditions and culture,
but is rather building upon the rich traditions of predecessors as a foundation
for open domestic and international exchange. It is a city which maintains a revolutionary
spirit, a city of ideas and the cultural capital of Japan, constantly creating
new traditions. In a partnership of trust with the people, efforts are made to
create a "relaxing lifestyle in a vibrant city", as a positive response
towards the new era, while simultaneously protecting and developing traditional
culture. Kyoto is a true jewel - Japan's asset and the world's treasure.