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About Ryoan-ji

Ryōan-ji, also known as “The Temple of the Dragon” is located in northwest Kyoto, Japan. The temple has one of the best examples of a “Zen Garden” in the world and in addition to the garden and temple, the site is home to a picturesque ornamental pond, a teahouse, and tea garden dating back to the 17th century.

Ryōan-ji is the perfect place to spend a few hours, and inside the Kuri building, the old temple kitchen, there are beautiful Japanese wall murals to admire in the simplistic halls. However, it is the striking gardens which are the focal point for most visitors to Ryōan-ji. The dry landscape or “Zen Garden” is thought to date back to the 15th century, with 15 rocks arranged in a specific design and tended daily by the monks. Visitors can sit on the veranda and view the rock formations in the garden, although it is said that only one who has achieved enlightenment will be able to view all 15 at the same time. The gardens outside the teahouse are picturesque at any time of the year and the Kyoyochi Pond dating back to the 12th century is also a wonderful place to sit and reflect, meditate, or photograph. There are many attractions close to Ryōan-ji, due to the geographical location it is a good idea to see them all on the same day if possible. Ninna-ji temple is a short walk away and Hirano Shrine, a couple of stops on the subway or a 20-minute walk is worth visiting, especially if the cherry blossom trees are in full bloom.

There are regular trains to Ryōan-ji, the station of the same name is located a few blocks walk from the temple and gardens. Take the Keifuku Dentetsu-Kitano Line which arrives close to the entrance. Ryōan-ji can also be reached from Kyoto Station by bus, taking around 30 minutes and running two or three times an hour. Walking from Kyoto central takes about an hour and 20 minutes, however, if visitors have the time to spare they can also see Nijō Castleen route in addition to other interesting temples and shrines.

Ryōan-ji was originally an estate of the aristocratic Fujiwara family. The site became a Zen temple in the 1400s and now belongs to the Rinzai sect of Zen Buddhism. Millions of visitors make the pilgrimage to Ryōan-ji each year to admire the famous Zen rock garden and explore the beautiful temple and gardens.

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Popular Ryoan-ji Hotels

Sakura Komachi

Sakura Komachi
Address
Kita Ward, Kyoto
Guest Rating
Very Good, 8.0
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Sakura Komachi is situated in Kyoto and is close to the area's tourist attractions. Guests can also enjoy complimentary Wi-Fi.

Hanazono Kaikan

Hanazono Kaikan
Address
Ukyo Ward, Kyoto
Guest Rating
Very Good, 8.0
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Less than a 20-minute stroll from Emmachi Station, Hanazono Kaikan provides guests with an ideal base when visiting Kyoto. It is close to Myoshin-ji, eateries and shops.

Guest House Kyorakuya Kinkakuji

Guest House Kyorakuya Kinkakuji
Address
Kita Ward, Kyoto
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Guest House Kyorakuya Kinkakuji is located in Kyoto and features free Wi-Fi. It is situated a short walk from the Kitano Tenman-gu Shrine and Kinkaku-ji.

Denshin-An

Denshin-An
Address
Ukyo Ward, Kyoto
Guest Rating
Exceptional, 9.8
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Denshin-An offers 3-star accommodation in Kyoto. It provides complimentary Wi-Fi, a concierge and a coffee bar.

Kyoyado Yaezakura

Kyoyado Yaezakura
Address
Kita Ward, Kyoto
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This comfortable guest house in Kyoto offers free wireless internet, as well as a swimming pool and a concierge. It is located a short stroll from the Kitano Tenman-gu Shrine, Kinkaku-ji and the Hirano Shrine.

Kouhaku Kyomachiya Kitano-Tenmangu

Kouhaku Kyomachiya Kitano-Tenmangu
Address
Kamigyo Ward, Kyoto
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Situated a short stroll from Kitano-Hakubaicho Station, Kouhaku Kyomachiya Kitano-Tenmangu offers guests a convenient base while in Kyoto. Guests can also enjoy free internet throughout the property.

Kitano Hakubaicho Inn

Kitano Hakubaicho Inn
Address
Kita Ward, Kyoto
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Situated only a five-minute walk from Kitano-Hakubaicho Station, Kitano Hakubaicho Inn offers guests an ideal base when visiting Kyoto. It is also a short car trip from Kyoto Tower and Kinkaku-ji.

Kitano Hakubaicho Inn2

Kitano Hakubaicho Inn2
Address
Kita Ward, Kyoto
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Located just a short walk from Kitano-Hakubaicho Station, Kitano Hakubaicho Inn2 provides guests with a convenient base when in Kyoto. It is also a short car trip from Kyoto Tower and Kinkaku-ji.

Kyowara Tenjin / Vacation Stay 6821

Kyowara Tenjin / Vacation Stay 6821
Address
Kita Ward, Kyoto
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Kyowara Tenjin / Vacation Stay 6821 provides a comfortable setting while in Kyoto. It is situated a short walk from Kinkaku-ji and the Kitano Tenman-gu Shrine.

Samurai Hotel Yaezakura

Samurai Hotel Yaezakura
Address
Kita Ward, Kyoto
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Less than a 20-minute stroll from Kitano-Hakubaicho Station, Samurai Hotel Yaezakura provides guests with a convenient base when visiting Kyoto. It also offers laundry facilities, luggage storage and free Wi-Fi.

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