Higashi Honganji Temple (Kyoto) Show mapShow gallery

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  • Higashi Honganji Temple Goei-do Mon (Founder's Hall) In Kyoto

  • Higashi Honganji Temple In Kyoto

  • Higashi Honganji Temple Founder's Hall (Goei-do)

  • Higashi Honganji Temple Amida Hall

  • Higashi Honganji Temple Amida Hall

  • Higashi Honganji Temple Amida Hall

  • Higashi Honganji Temple Reception Office

  • Higashi Honganji Purification Fountain

  • Higashi Honganji Nagoya Betsuin

  • Higashi Honganji Gate In Kyoto

  • Higashi Honganji Moat In Kyoto

  • Map Of Higashi Honganji Temple In Kyoto

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Facts & Figures

Higashi Honganji (Eastern Temple) is the head temple of Shinshu Otani-ha, a branch of Pure Land Buddhism, called Shinshu Hombyo. Higashi Honganji is one of two temple complexes of Jodo Shinshu. The other one nearby is Nishi Honganji. The temple ground is separated in 2 parts and covers an area of 93140 square meters. Best Ryokans in KyotoExplore Ryokans in Kyoto
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The first part includes Amida Hall and Founder's Hall, while the second part includes several pavilions (inner halls). My must-see recommendation for you within the temple complex is The Founder's Hall (Goei-do). It is one of the largest wooden buildings in the world. Inside the hall you will find the image of Shinran (1173 - 1262, founder of the Jodo Shinshu sect), 175000 handmade roof tiles and Buddhist decorations.

  • Higashi Honganji Temple:
  • Opening Hours - 5:50 am to 5:30 pm (Mar till Oct)
  • Opening Hours - 6:20 am to 4:30 pm (Nov till Feb)
  • Closed - never, open the whole year
  • Admission Fee - free

History

In 1262 Shinran, known as Kenshin Daishi and founder of the Jodo Shinshu sect, died at the age of 90. After his death in 1272 the Otani Mausoleum was built by his youngest daughter Kakushin-ni. This mausoleum is the origin of the Higashi Honganji temple complex. Over time Higashi Hongan-ji´s influence became very powerful. Shogun Tokugawa Ieyasu (17th century) was very worried about this development and decided to seperate the temple in an eastern (Higashi) and western (Nishi) part. The temple halls were destroyed by fire 4times during the Edo period. The current buildings dating back to 1895.

Location Show map

Higashi Honganji is located northeast of Kyoto Station.
Address: Karasuma Shichi-jo Agaru, Shimogyo-ku, 600-8505 Kyoto

How to get to Higashi Honganji?

  • 8min walk from Kyoto Station to Higashi Honganji Temple

Sightseeing spots

Top:

Founder's Hall Gate (Goei-do Mon) - The construction of the gate took from 1907 till 1911. The height of the two-story gate is appr. 28 m.

The Founder's Hall (Goei-do) - Is the largest and most important building within the temple complex. The dimensions are really impressive: length 76 m, width 58 m, height 38 m. The latest reconstruction took from 1879 till 1895.

Amida Hall - Inside the hall the image of Amida Buddha is displayed on the main altar. Enjoy the beautiful drawings, made by the famous artists Chikudo Kishi and Gesshu Hata, at the sliding doors during your visit.

The Reception Office (Sanpai Settai-sho) - The construction of the building, designed by architect Goichi Takeda (1872 - 1938), was finished in 1934.

Festival & Events in Kyoto (dates can change without notice)

April

Miyako Odori (1st - 31th)
The traditional annual spring dance of the Kyoto district Gion Kobu performed by Geiko and Maiko is a must-see on your Kyoto visit. Don't miss the most popular dances the Miyako Odori "Cherry Blossom Dances" or "Dances of the Old Capital" at the Gion Kobu Kaburenjo Theater (located close to Gion Corner).

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).

Obon Festival at Higashi Honganji Temple (30th - 31st)
The annual summer Obon Festival honors the spirit of our ancestors. You can enjoy there tea ceremony demonstrations, games, flower market, delicious food, Bon Odori Dancing and much more.

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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