Kinkakuji Temple (Rokuonji Temple) [Kyoto]


Kinkakuji Temple (Rokuonji) is a temple of the Shokokuji School of the Rinzai sect, located in Kinkakuji-cho, Kita-ku, Kyoto, Japan. It is also called Kinkakuji Temple because of the gold leaf on the inside and outside of the building. The temple was destroyed by arson in 1950 and rebuilt in 1955. In 1994 (Heisei 6), it was also registered as a component of UNESCO’s World Heritage (cultural heritage) “Cultural Properties of Ancient Kyoto. It is said that Ashikaga Yoshimitsu, the third shogun of the Muromachi Shogunate, took over the villa of Saionji no Kitsune, a lord of the Kamakura period, and built Kitayama-den, a mountain villa.

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The garden and architecture centering on the Golden Pavilion are said to represent the Pure Land of Ultimate Bliss in this world, and it was a stage that contributed to the development of culture by inviting Emperor Gokomatsu, father of the famous Zen master Ikkyu Zenji, and by promoting trade with China. After Yoshimitsu’s death, the temple became a temple in accordance with his last will and testament, and was named Rikaenji Temple after two characters from Yoshimitsu’s Buddhist name, Rikaenin-den.

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It is wonderful to see it from afar and up close. It is difficult to go on because there are so many tourists, but you should visit with the intention of taking a leisurely stroll once in a while. This is unavoidable, but since there are many tourists and it is noisy, you should think of it as a tourist spot.


Manager’s comment.

I think it is a must-see spot when visiting Kyoto. I would like to come back again if I have a chance, as the view changes in spring, summer, fall, and winter. It is quite crowded after noon, and the parking lot may be full, so it is better to visit in the morning to take your time.

my opinion

Kinkakuji Temple

1 Kinkakuji-cho, Kita-ku, Kyoto, 603-8361, Japan

Large parking lot. 300 yen per hour.

Approximately 40 minutes by bus from JR Kyoto Station

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