Kyoto #28: 銀閣寺【Ginkaku-Ji】

Wabi-Sabi World
Ginkaku-Ji in Kyoto.

Ginkaku-Ji, a national treasure, is one of the most popular sightseeing spots in Kyoto. It has a more sober image than Kinkaku-Ji, which is often compared, but in fact it is a sightseeing spot with full of highlights. There are many attractive things in the precinct, such as a garden and an observatory, so people can enjoy sightseeing throughout the year.



Ginkaku-Ji, whichi is officially called Jisho-Ji temple, is as famous as Kinkaku-Ji in Kyoto. It is one of Zen temples that symbolizes the Higashiyama culture of Muromachi era. Ginkaku-ji is Kyoto’s representative tourist spot where you can feel wabi and sabi. So people feel more Japanese-like atmosphere than the other places in Kyoto.



Small, but magnificent…
The gate is the entrance to Ginkaku-Ji but is surprisingly small. Go through main gate, called So-mon, and follow the road to the right, people can see the Ginkaku-ji gaki which is a beautifully cut vertical bamboo.

Approach & gate


Wabi-Sabi Japanese beauty…
Ginkaku-Ji is the ultimate temple in pursuit of simple beauty, in contrast to Kinkaku-Ji which shines in gold. Also, for foreign tourists, Ginkaku-Ji, which has a Japanese-style wabi-sabi, is more popular than flashy Kinkaku-Ji. The beauty of Ginkaku-Ji with snow makeup, especially in winter, is exceptional.



In addition, there is a phoenix called Ho-oh on the roof of it. This is quite similar with Kinkaku-Ji temple. As I said before, Hoh-Oh is a symbol of Good Luck and Happiness! That’s why people can see them at some temples and shrines.

Statue of Phoenix


No two things like this are the same…
Kogetsudai is made of finely piled sand and is said to represent Mt. Fuji. Ginshadan is a pattern made of sand spreading around Kozukidai. It represents a wave and is said to have been made to imitate the world heritage Seiko Pond in China.




What a beautiful garden…
This garden with the pond called “Kinkyochi” at the center attracts many people, especially tourists from overseas. People can see Ginkaku-Ji behind the pond with various natural stones and pine trees. Walking around the Ginkaku-Ji garden, reflected views on the pond on a sunny day, is popular as the premier viewing spot in the precinct.

Ginkaku-Ji garden


Go Up To The Observatory…
In addition, the observatory, which is located on the east side of the precinct, is quite popular and awesome. To put it simply, the observatory is a hill on the eastern side of the precincts, where people can see not only the entire Ginkaku-Ji but also the city of Kyoto. It is also recommended to walk on the walking path surrounded by greenery to the observation deck.

Up to the observatory
Views from the obvervatory


This time, we have introduced Ginkaku-Ji in Kyoto. When you come to Kyoto, you should visit there and see its Kyoto-like beauty and magnificence. You can experience awesome atmosphere and nature there.


Sightseeing Kyoto#1: 清水寺【Kiyomizu-Dera Temple】 Kyoto#2: 高台寺【Kodai-Ji Temple】 Kyoto#3: 金閣寺【Kinkaku-Ji […]


・ Open:
Summer season (Mar~Nov): 8:30~17:00
Winter season (Dec~Feb): 8:30~17:00

・Admission Fee: 500 yen(Adult)

・HP URL(English):