Cherry Blossom Time in KyotoICSE-98 will be held in Kyoto, which is the cultural soul of Japan. Nestled among low mountains, it is blessed with both natural beauty and a rich historical legacy. It is the ideal site for international conventions. From its establishment as Japan's capital in 794 until the Meiji Restoration in 1868, Kyoto flourished as the center of government, commerce and culture in Japan. Traditional arts and an abundance of shrines and temples give the city its distinct character. With nearly 1.5 million residents, Kyoto is a vibrant mixture of old and new. Many high-tech firms have chosen it as their headquarters, and the city boasts 47 public and private colleges and universities. These significant intellectual resources combine with Kyoto's long history and tradition to provide an ideal milieu for innovation and creativity. Natural Beauty: Kyoto is a panorama of the changing seasons; from the springtime cherry blossoms lining narrow walkways and the lush greenery of summer, to the brilliant autumn foliage of Japanese maples and the delicate layer of snow covering the surrounding mountain sides in winter. The passage of seasons is also evident in the beautiful gardens of Kyoto's ancient temples and shrines.
Cultural Heritage: Reflecting its long history as the cultural and religious center of Japan, Kyoto is home to nearly 2,000 Buddhist temples and Shinto shrines. The city's international cultural significance was recognized when 17 historical sites in Kyoto were designated as UNESCO World Cultural Heritage Sites. Kyoto is the location of 20% of Japan's national treasures. More than 60 museums throughout the city offer visitors the opportunity to view priceless works of art and important cultural objects.
Kyoto International Conference Hall: Japan's leading convention center, the Kyoto International Conference Hall, is a complex consisting of seven separate conference halls, the largest of which can hold 2,000 persons. Another 70 conference rooms of various sizes are available for smaller meetings. Two large banquet halls and a Japanese landscape garden offer additional settings for convention participants to meet and communicate informally.
Transport: Kyoto has many modern hotels with accommodations for up to 20,000 visitors. Located near the center of Japan, it is readily accessible by land and air. The high-speed Shinkansen (bullet train) links Tokyo with Kyoto in 2 hours and 15 minutes. Overseas visitors arriving at Kansai International Airport have a comfortable 75-minute ride by the Haruka Express train to Kyoto Station. Kyoto has a well-developed public transportation system of trains, subways and buses. Extensions to the Kyoto subway system will provide a direct link from Kyoto Station to the Kyoto International Conference Hall by the end of July '97.
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