Kyoto north

- Kinkakuji Temple

The Kinkakuji temple is the most famous temple in Kyoto, and as it is written in Japanese, it is a gold shining pavillion.
This is a very rare temple of 3 stories high, and the official name of this temple is Rokuonji, but as inside and exterior of the building is doubly or triply coated with gold foil,  so that it is called by the name of Kinkakuji (Kin is gold, the gold pavillion.)
It was built in the end of 14th century, and restored many times, but it has been completely destroyed by arson in 1950. The one of today is reconstructed as it has been before originally.
The Japanese famous novelist of modern Japanese literature, Yukio Mishima wrote a novel titled "Kinkakuji" which made the temple more well-known, and it shines more with its legend. 


- Ryoanji temple

The rock garden of Ryoanji temple of which the dry landscape is appreciated by Elisabeth II very much and since then, this temple drew the focus of public attention from all over the world. It is now very reknown and it is one of the World Heritage of Kyoto city.
In the rock garden, there are 15 stones are placed, but the entire composition cannot be seen at once from any angle.
There are no documents about the history and the architect of the garden exist today, and we do not find exactly when it is constucted either.
There is a mystery behind the positions of the stones. There are a lot of people who tried to find out the mystery of the stones, but nobody succeeded.
We ofthen talk only about the garden, but there are also beautiful Fusuma-e (decorative picutre on the surface of fusuma which is a kind of Japanese door inside of the house) and another beautiful gardens, too.


- Shimogamo-jinja shrine

The Shimogamo jinja, formal name is the Kamomioya-jinja, one of the most oldest shrine in Kyoto, registered in the world heritage out of 17 Historic Monuments of Ancient Kyoto.
The history of the shrine can go back to B.C. 90 as a legend tells that ritual events has taken place before the introduction of Buddhism into Japan.
It is the one of the few prestigious temples which allow to practice Shikinen Sengu, the system of reconstruction, all shrines in the Shimogamo complex are meant to be rebuilt every 21 years. However, the building is no longer able to be destroyed once registered in the world heritage, but able to be renovated partially every 21 years. The present buildings was renovated in 2015; for  such occasions, we can see it in good condition.
The temple surrounded by huge primordial woods where is believed longmai running (feng shui) and it illuminates the spot as the power spot (places with full of spiritual energy).
Also the temple is known as the gods of the beauty that calls for female visitors. The source comes from Tamayorihime-no-mikoto, a woman of great beauty, is enshrined in the main sanctuary of the shrine.
You can recharge by visiting the temple, the leading spiritual temple with full of spiritual energy. 


- Ginkakuji temple

A formal name of the Ginkakuji temple is Jihoji temple and one of the historic monuments registered in the world heritage.
The temple is often considered as a counterpart of Kinkakuji temple, formal name is Rokuonji temple, located in the western area of Kyoto.
Both of the Kinkakuji and the Ginkakuji are constructed in 15th century by shoguns’ orders on the purpose of their second houses. 
As contrasted with the Kinkakuji covered by kinpaku (gold  leaf) as its name indicated, Ginkakuji has calm atmosphere that reminds Wabisabi (Japanese traditional kind of beauty, leaving space intentionally for interpretation by a viewer).
The Kinkakuji rebuilt recently as it is burnt out in 1950 due to a fire-setting whereas the Ginkakuji retains the atmosphere of the era when it was built and surrounded by beautiful garden on a slope which harmonized well with the dark wooden walls.
You will get into the sprit of the landscape that heals the Shoguns’ anxiety.


- Tetsugaku-no-michi Street (the Philosophers' path)

From the Ginkakuji temple access lane to the Kumano-Nyakuouji-jinja shrine located just before the Eikando temple, you will find a path along the river that rises at Lake Biwa, a walk of about 1.5 km that we call the Tetsugaku-no-michi Street. The name comes from Kitaro Nishida and Hajime Tanabe who are representative philosophers of Japan used to walk the path for meditation in addition to the path is close to Kyoto University where both of them graduated.
The path is selected 100 the most beautiful walking path in Japan since this walk shows us seasonally changing charms: cherry blossoms in spring, the greenery at the beginning of summer, and colour leaves in autumn. 


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