Ginkaku-ji

Close by the Path of Philosophy was Ginkaku-ji (or the Silver Pavilion) constructed as a villa in 1482 for a shogun. After the shogun’s death the grounds at the base of Higashiyama Mountain Range were converted into a temple.

Ginkakuji Temple Gardens, Kyoto
Ginkaku-ji temple gardens, Kyoto

The site included a vast network of paths and buildings, but what impressed me most were the Japanese sand gardens. The first lay inside the entrance and others continued around the buildings but ended once I climbed the lower base of the mountain.

Ginkakuji Temple Gardens, Kyoto
This zen garden stood a metre high, Ginkaku-ji

At the highest point, Kannon-den peeped through the lush foliage that must have been a blaze of colour in the autumn. This two-storey building was designed with the lower floor in a traditional Japanese style while the second level was in a Chinese temple style.

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