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Ryoanji Temple, Kyoto

3.8
With a history spanning over five centuries, Ryoanji Temple boasts probably the nation's most iconic rock garden. Founded in 1450, the temple stands atop an even older aristocrat's residence. The garden notably features 15 rocks of varying sizes and shapes spread out across the surface, each surrounded by a small patch of moss. Think about the mysterious symbolism of the garden, which features a design that obscures at least one rock from view from all angles. Afterwards, wander the extensive temple grounds, which boast a number of walking trails, shrines, flowering trees, and a pond. Wrap up you visit with a quick meal at the onsite cafe. Plan to see Ryoanji Temple and other attractions that appeal to you using our Kyoto trip planner .
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Ryoanji Temple Reviews
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TripAdvisor Traveler Rating 4.0
2,482 reviews
TripAdvisor
  • You are attracted to Ryoanji for the famous zen garden and on its own worth the visit but the gardens and lake of this very large property are a wonderful retreat to walk around. On our visit there ap...  more »
  • God, in Kyoto there is so much to see that this cute stone garden is literally lost against the background of other more eminent sights. I visited it only during my third (yes, thank God, book publishers regularly invite me with my novels!) When I found myself in this paradise, I was reluctant to return to the city! Here it was divinely calm, I wanted to wander slowly on the paths and enjoy the beauty of nature! I felt like a Japanese philosopher, not a Russian writer:-) I wanted to create something profound and impered... and I promised myself to come back here to take inspiration!
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