Although Nara is just south of Osaka, I must admit to not having explored it much; it usually loses out to the more accessible spots in Kyoto. Nara does, however, have a lot of great places to visit for those willing to make the effort. By effort I mean use a bus and maybe walk for about 10 minutes — how inconvenient!
Anyway, Last Sunday I made it out to Tanzan Jinja, a shinto shrine that piqued my interest after I saw pictures of its unusual 13-story pagoda. It's a nice shrine and hopefully I can go back in Spring to check out the hiking trails behind it.