Temple where you may feel the sense of Jodo-shu, Pure Land Sect, teaching
Located in the back of Yasaka Shrine, Chion-in was established by Ho-nen (1133-1212) who is the founder of Jodo-shu, or the Pure Land Sect. His teachings are often called “Nenbutsu-only” from the fact that only the name of Amitabha is chanted. When you visit, you might hear the chant from temple monks. The old temples such as Mieido, Sanmon and the main gate, are designated National Treasures and various kinds of Buddhism events are held regularly. One of the events is known as “Gohouwa” where you can hear the teachings of Jodo-shu, the ideal method of worship in Buddhism. It is interesting to note that you can also try Sho-jin Ryo-ri, a vegetarian cuisine originally derived from the dietary restrictions of Buddhist monks, for lunch at one of the temples where visitors usually cannot enter. Please refer to Notes in the Details section below for more information.
Honen Shonin Mido
As Mieido is under renovation until 2019 and you cannot enter due to its renewal, its main statue, "Zendo-daishi", was transferred to Honen Shonin Mido. Honen Shonin Mido was established in 1635 and you may witness groups of people gathering for Buddhist memorial services. You may also hear monks chanting Amitabha. Please note that you cannot take photos in the hall.
Daisho-ro, Great Bell Tower
At first glance, you may be astonished by its size and solemnness! It was molded in 1636 and is known as one of the Great Bells of Japan. It is a tradition that this bell is tolled on New Year’s Eve by 17 monks. It is very crowded on that day, but it is worth visiting to feel the atmosphere of a Japanese New Year!
Visit Hojo Teien, Hojo Garden
This garden is designed around a pond and was created in the early Edo period (1600 - 1868). In the back of the garden, you can see a beautiful view of Higashiyama. It is especially gorgeous in the autumn as the maple leaves change colors. (Please refer to the 'Fee' section for the entrance fee)
Visit Yuzen-en Garden
This garden is in connection with Yuzen who was the founder of the Yuzen style of dyeing. The water of the pond is from spring water in Higashiyama and the tea room called "Hakuju-an" and "Karei-an" stand secretly at the back of the garden. Although you cannot have tea there presently, you can feel the history of Japanese tea ceremonies. This garden is popular for cherry blossoms whereas the Hojo Garden is famous for autumn leaves.
Manner & Tips
- Manner & Tips -
Please do not take photoｓ inside the temple. Please follow what the signs say.
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Chion-in / 知恩院
|Category||Temples & Shrines, Japanese Gardens|
|Address||400 Rinka-cho, Higashiyama-ku, Kyoto|
|Directions||8 minute walk from Higashiyama Station on Subway Tozai Line|
|Open Hours||9:00am - 4:00pm|
|Reservations||Please make a reservation for Shojin Ryori, a vegetarian cuisine originally derived from the dietary restrictions of Buddhist monks, at least 5 days prior to the date that you wish to have it. Please call +81 75-531-2208 or FAX +81 75-531-2228 for reservations.|
|Notes||If you would like to try Shojin Ryori, a vegetarian cuisine originally derived from the dietary restrictions of Buddhist monks, Chion-in serves it for lunch. There are two kinds of Sho-jin Ryo-ri on offer (￥4,000 and ￥3,000) and one regular lunch box (￥1,500). If you order one of them, you can have your Shojin Ryori or lunch box in one of the temples in Chion-in where visitors usually cannot enter. Please note that you need to reserve it at least 5 days prior to the date that you wish to have it. Please call +81 75-531-2208 or FAX +81 75-531-2228.|
￥300/ adult ￥150/ children for Yuzen-en ￥400/ adult ￥200/ children for Hojo Garden (Common ticket for both Yuzen-en and Hojo Garden costs ￥500)
|Credit cards||Not accepted|
English brochures are available at the tourist information center at the entrance. You can feel the teachings of the Jodo Shu, Pure Land Sect, as you walk around the temple and hear the sound of Amitabha chanting.
|Information||English brochures are available at tourist information center at the entrance|
|Lanuages spoken||Japanese only|