Kokedera Temple

Sightseeing information about Kokedera Temple in Japan.


World Heritage: Kokedera Temple (Moss Temple)4.6

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This zen temple, listed as one of Kyoto's Unesco World Heritage Sites, is well known for fantastical cultivation of mosses everywhere in its vast garden. There are estimated 120 different varieties of mosses and you can enjoy a free stroll in this mesmerizing carpet of moss green. The best season is a rainy season in June but the contrast with red foliage in autumn and white snow in winter is also beautiful.

Reservation is required at least two weeks in advance of your trip and the concierge desk at most hotels can handle the procedure for you. The temple sits on a quiet hill on the western fringes of Kyoto and reached by one-hour bus ride. The calligraphy of Buddhist sutra is included in the temple tour.

Purposeelderly,world heritage,family,shrine/temple,art,autumn foliage,sightseeing
Airport/Sta.Osaka International Airport (about 31.4km) Google Transit

Reviews

5.0a month ago

This is one of the more unique and beautiful places I've seen in the world in 40 years. Perhaps if you've grown up living in moss covered landscapes, it is somewhat mundane, but otherwise it's rather magical. It is not an amusement park; if being quiet in serene landscapes isn't your thing, then this place isn't for you. If I lived in Kyoto I would visit it seasonally.

5.0a month ago

This temple is NO1 of my Fav in Kyoto. The green space and incredible moss were healed my feeling to become peaceful 🙏 . I wish ,I can stay in this place for all day long.

2.0a week ago

The moss gardens are nice but the monks (and other staff) at this temple are really rude and arrogant. This isn't some random "ugly tourist" speaking - I might very well have visited more Buddhist temples then the very people working here. I was here with a group of elderly people once and asked politely if they had any more chairs for the sutra copying in the beginning. I wasn't demanding, I was merely inquiring. The guy looked at me as if I had asked him to bring us their best champagne and just spat out "you should have come earlier!"

It's not worth the hassle with the postcards just to be treated like an unwelcome intruder in the end, and despite the limitatations, the place still manages to get really crowded. Go to one of the many other similar temples in Kyoto instead and skip the crowds, the 'tude and the ridiculous entrance fees. Gio-ji in Arashiyama is a favorite of mine. There's a great place in Ohara too, forget the name.

4.04 months ago

Pleasant temple, special experience to hand write Buddhist prayer, need to send postcard for reservation in advance, no phone call or email reservation. Expensive fee for visiting.

3.07 months ago

Beautiful temple but 3000 yen entrance is too expensive. Plus it takes almost an hour to get here by bus from Kyoto downtown. Visitors can only make reservation through mail months beforehand and get in at the reserved time slot, and stay for 2 hr max. The whole experience felt a bit transactional. Monk chanting for 15 mins. Visitors write down their wish on the wood and then are guided to go to the garden.

It might be a special experience for whoever not familiar with Buddhism, but in my opinion not worth it.

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