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May. 07, 2020 UPDATE
Hosen-in Temple - 宝泉院 -
Traveler Friendly
There are English brochures at the entrance and also a staff who speaks fluent English and can explain the historical events happened in this temple (not always in the temple).
Information
Japanese and English
Languages spoken
Japanese and English
1930 31 8.0 1 reviews
May. 07, 2020 UPDATE

Hosen-in Temple

- 宝泉院 -
Traveler Friendly
There are English brochures at the entrance and also a staff who speaks fluent English and can explain the historical events happened in this temple (not always in the temple).
Information
Japanese and English
Languages spoken
Japanese and English
1930 31 8.0 1 reviews
Story & Recommendation
Hosen-in Temple – A picturesque garden and 700-year-old tree in Ohara, Kyoto
Hosen-in Temple is located in the rural Kyoto village of Ohara.
Ohara is about an hour by train from Kyoto station, but its many magnificent temples make it a worthwhile trip
One of those temples, Hosen-in, is the perfect place for calm, solitary meditation.
When you enter the temple’s main hall, you’re greeted by huge windowless frames which open out to the garden.
From inside the main hall, the frames transform the picturesque beautiful garden into what can only be described as a living painting.
If you so wish, you can also enjoy some matcha green tea and traditional Japanese sweets while you bask in the artistry of the garden.
1Highlight
The Picturesque Garden
The Picturesque Garden
When you enter the main hall, one of the first things you’ll notice is a huge tree. This nearly 700 year old pinetree is famous for its shape that resembles Mount Fuji and unique clusters of five needles. We suggest stepping to the back of the hall and enjoying the garden from there as the windowless frames that look out on the garden turn the scene into a living, breathing picture.
2Highlight
Blood-stained Ceiling
Blood-stained Ceiling
Around 400 years ago, the “Siege of Fushimi” was fought in Kyoto. The samurai of Fushimi lost the fight and about 370 of them committed seppuku. The planks used for the ceiling in this temple were originally those of the floor where these samurai committed suicide. You can still see the stains of the brutal events that transpired – including some in the shapes of the eyebrows, eyes, noses and mouths of the dying samurai. All of these stains are from the blood of the samurai warriors.
3Good Experiences
Enjoy Matcha
Enjoy Matcha
At Hosen-in Temple, you can also enjoy a bowl of matcha green tea and Japanese sweets. We suggest enjoying your matcha on the red carpet near the veranda first and then move to the back of the main hall where you’ll be able to get a different view of the temple’s magnificent garden.
4Good Experiences
Listen to the Suikinkutsu Water Harp
Listen to the Suikinkutsu Water Harp
When you enter the main hall, you will find two bamboo poles on the left hand side. When you get close to them, you will be able to hear the beautiful sound of trickling water. This garden ornament turned instrument is called a Suikinkutsu, or water harp. Inside the suikinkutsu there is a buried jar that creates an echo whenever water drops into it. The sounds are different each time depending on the size of the water drops. Take a moment to enjoy listening to the tranquil sounds of this so-called water harp in the Hosen-in Temple’s dignified garden.
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