sights / Religious

Daitoku-ji information

Kyoto , Japan
53 Daitokuji-chō, Murasakino, Kita-ku
Getting there
Subway: Karasuma line to Kitaōji
Opening hours
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Daitoku-ji is a separate world within Kyoto – a world of Zen temples, perfectly raked gardens and wandering lanes. It's one of the most rewarding destinations in this part of the city, particularly for those with an interest in Japanese gardens. The temple serves as the headquarters of the Rinzai Daitoku-ji school of Zen Buddhism. The highlights among the 24 subtemples include Daisen-in , Kōtō-in , Ōbai-in , Ryōgen-in and Zuihō-in .

The eponymous Daitoku-ji is on the eastern side of the grounds. It was founded in 1319, burnt down in the next century and rebuilt in the 16th century. The San-mon gate (1589) has a self-carved statue of its erector, the famous tea-master Sen no Rikyū, on its 2nd storey.

The Karasuma subway line is the best way to get here. From the station, walk west along Kitaōji-dōri for about 15 minutes. You’ll see the temple complex on your right. The main entrance is bit north of Kitaōji. If you enter from the main gate, which is on the east side of the complex, you'll soon after find Daitoku-ji on your right.