Ginkaku-ji (Kyoto) Show mapShow gallery

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Domo arigato.
  • Ginkaku-ji Temple Of The Silver Pavilion In Kyoto

  • Ginkaku-ji Temple Of The Silver Pavilion In Kyoto

  • Ginkaku-ji Temple Sand Cone Named Moon Viewing Platform

  • Ginkaku-ji Temple With Sand Garden In Kyoto

  • Ginkaku-ji Temple In Kyoto

  • Ginkaku-ji Temple Of The Silver Pavilion In Kyoto

  • Ginkaku-ji Temple Of The Silver Pavilion In Kyoto

  • Ginkaku-ji Temple Of The Silver Pavilion In Kyoto

  • Ginkaku-ji Temple Moos Garden In Kyoto

  • Ginkaku-ji Temple Moos Garden In Kyoto

  • Ginkaku-ji Temple Moos Garden In Kyoto

  • Ginkaku-ji Temple Sengetsu-sen Falls In Kyoto

  • Ginkaku-ji Temple Of The Silver Pavilion In Kyoto

  • Ginkaku-ji Temple Of The Silver Pavilion In Kyoto

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Facts & Figures

Ginkaku-ji or “Temple of the Silver Pavilion” is famous for its main building but the Zen temple complex consists of more smaller structures, a moss garden and a beautiful Zen garden. The temple area and its buildings are a perfect showcase for the Higashiyama Culture of Muromachi period. The architectural highlight is the two-story Kannon Hall (Ginkaku, Silver Pavilion). It was planned in the beginning the cover the exterior of the hall in silver foil, but this plan was never finished till the death of the founder shogun Ashikaga Yoshimasa in 1490. The sand garden ("Sea of Silver Sand") of Ginkaku-ji has become particularly well known for the massive sand cone called "Moon Viewing Platform" which symbolize Mount Fuji.

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  • Ginkaku-ji
  • Opening Hours - 9:00 am to 4:30 pm (December to March)
  • Opening Hours - 8:30 am to 5:00 pm (rest of the year)
  • Admission Fee - 500 yen

History

Ginkaku-ji (officially named Jisho-ji - "Temple of Shining Mercy") was built in 1482 as the retirement villa for shogun Ashikaga Yoshimasa (1436 - 1490). The model for his villa was Kinkaku-ji or "Temple of the Golden Pavilion" constructed by his grandfather Ashikaga Yoshimitsu. The last extensive restoration of the temple started in 2008 and were completed in 2010.

Location Show map

Ginkaku-ji is located along Kyoto's eastern mountains (Higashiyama) within the Sakyo ward.
Address: 2 Ginkakuji-cho, Sakyo-ku, Kyoto

How to get to Ginkaku-ji?

  • 40min from Kyoto Station by bus 5, 17, 102, 203 and 204 to Ginkakuji-michi and
  • walk from there 10min to Ginkaku-ji

Sightseeing spots

Top:

Ginkaku-ji (Silver Pavilion) - the beautiful building contains a statue of Kannon (Buddhist goddess of mercy), no public access

Sand Garden - designed by artist and architect Soami (1465-1523)

Togudo Temple (East Seeking Hall) a National Treasure - shogun Ashikaga Yoshimasa has lived here, he used the back room Dojinsai (Comradely Abstinence) for tea ceremonies, this arrangement became the role model for tea pavilions all over Japan's

Festival & Events (dates can change without notice)

May

Aoi Matsuri (15th)
The highlight of this festival is a large parade from Imperial Palace through Shimogamo Shrine to the Kamo Shrines. More than 500 people wearing aristocratic costumes from the Heian Period (794 - 1185). The Aoi Matsuri belongs with the Gion Matsuri and Jidai Matsuri to the three most famous festivals in Kyoto.

July

Gion Matsuri (whole month)
The month July is full of different events like the Yoiyama - Kyoto's Magical Night (locals in kimonos look at the giant Gion floats the day before the parade) or the famous Yamaboko Junko (float procession on the 17th of July).

October

Jidai Matsuri ("Festival of Ages") (22nd)
People celebrate with a large parade between Imperial Palace to Heian Shrine the anniversary of the foundation of Kyoto. App. 2000 participants wearing historical costumes from different time periods. Enjoy this great festival which last around 2 hours.

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