Tetsugaku-no-Michi (Path of Philosophy)
The Tetsugaku-no-Michi is one of the most pleasant walks in all of Kyoto. Lined with a great variety of flowering plants, bushes and...
One of Kyoto’s hidden pleasures, this temple was founded in 1680 to honour the priest Hōnen. It’s a lovely, secluded temple with...
Only open to the public in spring and autumn, Reikan-ji is one of Kyoto’s great lesser-visited attractions. During the spring opening,...
This elegant noodle shop is named after the thick white noodles that are served in a hot broth with a selection of seven fresh...
Lonely Planet review
Ginkaku-ji is one of Kyoto's premier sights. In 1482 Shōgun Ashikaga Yoshimasa constructed a villa here as a genteel retreat from the turmoil of civil war. The villa's name translates as 'Silver Pavilion', but the shōgun's ambition to cover the building with silver was never realised. After Yoshimasa's death, the villa was converted into a temple.
Walkways lead through the gardens, which include meticulously raked cones of white sand (said to be symbolic of a mountain and a lake), tall pines and a pond in front of the temple. A path also leads up the mountainside through the trees.
Note that Ginkaku-ji is one of the city's most popular sites, and it is almost always crowded, especially during the spring and autumn. We strongly recommend visiting right after it opens or just before it closes.
From JR Kyoto or Keihan Sanjō Station, take bus 5 and get off at the Ginkaku-ji-michi stop. From Demachiyanagi Station or Shijō Station, take bus 203 to the same stop.