Sorinji Temple in Kyoto

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  • Sorinji Temple in Kyoto

    Sorinji Temple in Kyoto

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Facts & Figures

Sorinji Temple is with a history of over 1200 years one of the oldest Buddhist temples of the Tendai sect in Japan. The temple is located near the Maruyama Park in Kyoto. Since hundreds of years this place is known for its cherry blossom viewing parties. Even the famous daimyo Toyotomi Hideyoshi (1537 – 1598) came here in 1584 to enjoy the scenery. The only remains of the former much larger temple complex are the Saigyodo-hall and main hall. The principal Buddha of Sorin-ji Temple to be worshiped is Yakushi the Healing Buddha. The statue was created by monk Saicho (767 - 822) and is now designated as Important Cultural Property by the government.

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  • Sorinji Temple:
  • Opening Hours - 9:00 am to 4:00 pm
  • Closed - never
  • Admission Fee - free

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Sorinji Temple was constructed between 782 and 805. Its founding father was Saicho (767 - 822). He was a Japanese Buddhist monk and later known as Dengyo Daishi, who brought the Tendai Sect to Japan. During the Middle Ages there was a decline in the importance of the temple. Monk Kokua Shonin changed this fact in the years 1394 and 1427. Short after Sorinji became the head temple of the Ji-shu sect and was called Higashiyama-dojo. During the Onin War (1467 - 1477) the temple got partially destroyed and later rebuilt and converted into a Tendai sect temple during the Meiji Restoration (1868 - 1889). In the past the temple area was much bigger, but parts of the property was giving away in 1605 and 1653 to establish the Kodaiji Temple and Maruyama Park.


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Sorinji Temple is located within the Higashiyama district in Kyoto near Kodaiji Temple and Maruyama Park.
Address: 527 Washiocho, Higashiyama-ku, Kyoto, 605-0072

How to get to Sorinji Temple?

  • 20min from Kyoto Station to Gion bus stop by bus number 206 or 207 and
  • 12min walk from Gion bus stop to Sorinji Temple

Sightseeing spots


Yakushi - The Healing Buddha statue is now an Important Cultural Property.

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


Higashiyama Hanatouro Festival (Early - Mid March)
The illumination of local temples and roads by thousands of lanterns in the Higashiyama neighbourhood last for 10 days and starts at 6pm until 9:30pm. It is an unforgettable experience.


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).


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.


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).


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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