Nara is located near Kyoto and was the imperial capital from 710 until 784 before it was moved to Heijo-kyo (Kyoto). During this period, a large number of shrines and temples were erected under the protection of the imperial family and aristocrats. However, the monks in the surrounding hills started ro gain too much influence and eventually tried to seize power from the Shinto emperor. It was decided to move the capital to Heian-kyo, nowadays known as Kyoto. Many of the temples built at the height of Nara power, like the Todaiji and Horyuji temples, are currently registered as World Heritage Sites. Both Japanese and foreign tourists visit the city to see these temples, to walk among the free-roaming deer of Nara park or to visit some of the beautiful scenic mountains surrounding the city. You will return to Kyoto for the evening. The train from Kyoto Station to Nara Station will take about 45 minutes.