This grandiose temple in the Higashiyama district is the most popular pilgrimage temple in Kyoto. Chion-in was established in 1234 on the site where Honen, founder of the Jodo ('pure land') sect of Buddhism, passed away. The temple's grounds and buildings were hugely expanded in the early 17th century by the first three generations of the Tokugawa shogun family, who were ardent devotees of this sect.
At the entrance, you will stand in awe of the massive Sanmon gate, 24m tall and 50m wide, which is the largest wooden gate in Japan. The main hall, also expansive, houses a statue of Honen, and a wide open area with stone paths and staircases connects major buildings. The garden behind the main hall is a traditional Japanese garden designed by a monk in the 17th century.
Airport/Sta.Osaka International Airport (about 39.2km) Google Transit
We guide this spot.
5.03 weeks ago
Amazing experience, even though the main building was closed for repairs. There is a nice tour featuring two gardens, several shrines and cemeteries for about 600 yen per person. Also, there was not that many people here
4.03 months ago
One of the most beautiful temples in Kyoto, breathtaking views inside the temple. However, the main hall, which is meant to be exquisite, was under maintenance, and will be until the Olympics.
5.05 months ago
Temple with a unique building design, brown with wood carvings on the front. Being on the roadside, so easy to find. The park inside the temple is also spacious and can be visited by tourists.
3.06 months ago
Probably the more disappointing temple/shrine visited on our trip - we knew that the main area was closed until 2019 for restoration but it does make the whole area like a building site. To go with that the gardens are closed until late May 2018 too, and the other visitor area is for members/VIP only so really all you can see until may is the worshipping room and the big bell. The bell is huge and good for a 20 minute look around the place is you're nearby, but I wouldn't travel to see this place, many better ones in the Kyoto area.
3.0a month ago
I visited there 17th September 2018. It was under construction so I could not see the temples well.