“A natural medley of willows and cherry blossoms weave themselves into a brocade, the Heian-kyo” romanticises an ancient verse about Kyoto, Japan’s capital and residence of emperors between 794 and 1868. Wars and raging fires destroyed Kyoto – formerly called “Heian-Kyo”, Capital of Peace – repeatedly over the course of many centuries. Astonishingly, not so during WW II: thanks to its precious historic value, and the presence of mind of acting warlords, the city was spared the fate of being melted into contaminated grounds by a malign nuclear bomb or of being struck by hostile air raids. Other Japanese destinations were less fortunate. A wealth of cultural properties of the past like temples, shrines and other traditional structures was, thus, successfully preserved in Kyoto.