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Jaimee. Student of Japanese and anthropology.

Nara is just a 30-minute train ride from Kyoto station on the JR Nara line. It costs about $14 return, but is covered by the JR rail pass if you have one. Once at Nara station you can get a bus to the deer park, or you can just leisurely stroll for about 15 minutes following the signs to the deer park. I recommend walking since you go through some pretty cute little streets with locals selling their produce and meat. Once you get to the first major temple you can feed the deer or walk a bit further to the actual park. The deer cookies are like 150 yen ($1.50 AUD) and the deer go mental over them! As soon as you buy them they start swarming! They can be a bit pushy so be careful of the antlers haha. Some of the deer also bow for cookies, so try bowing before you feed them. While we were there, there was a female deer in a pen who was amazing at bowing! 

Deer are considered to be messengers to the Gods in Shinto religion, that’s why they’re so well looked after here.