We’ve made our way from Tokyo to Kyoto, the former capital of Japan. There appears to be an abundance of temples and shrines here, and today we walked around and visited four of the larger ones, all of them Buddhist temples.
The first stop was perhaps the most grand of them all, the Kinkaku-ji temple, or temple of the Golden Pavilion, a Zen Buddhist temple. The Golden Pavilion is a three-story building, with the two top floors covered in pure gold-leaf, reflecting in the pond in front of the building. The reason for such grand construction, is that the outside is suppose to reflect the greatness of what is inside the building, the shrines.
Next stop was the Ryoanji temple, which houses the Rock Garden. Created around the year 1500 by a monk, Tokuho Zenketsu, this small yet remarkable garden only consists of fifteen rocks with white gravel in between, and measures twentyfive by ten meters.
We also made a brief stop at the Toji-in Temple, founded in 1338 by Lord Ashikaga Takauji, the founder and first shogun of the Ashikaga shogunate.
Last stop on our temple-safari was the Ninna-ji temple. After having been destroyed by fire, most of the temple dates back to the 17th century when restoration was carried out. Ninna-ji consists of several buildings, some have actually been moved from the Kyoto Imperial Palace and rebuilt here.