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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
2,116 reviews
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  • This was a place we visited on our first day in Kyoto . A very interesting place quiet and slightly off the beaten track Would highly recommend for the stone features  more »
  •  Fall foliage is starting there. Autumn is greeted at 11 months late. It will calm mind turns slowly. Adults who can park and stone garden at 500 yen.
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  • This is a very special Zen Buddhist garden with typical rocks and pebbles formation , completed in 1450 . One of UNESCO World Heritage sites . Very special spiritual meanings according to the Zen phil...  more »

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Where to stay in Kyoto

Kyoto spoils visitors for choice when it comes to good accommodations, offering everything from traditional ryokans to luxury Western-style hotels. In a city used to receiving foreign travelers, you'll find that most establishments know exactly what to offer tourists and how to help newcomers to the area. To avoid paying premium prices during the cherry blossom season, consider staying in Osaka, located just a 30-minute train ride away. If you must stay in Kyoto itself, keep in mind that centrally located hotels charge more than those in the outer neighborhoods.
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