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Ryoanji Temple, Ukyo

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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  • Well who knew a few rocks could have such an effect - but the Japanese know a thing or two about gardens - and there is something very special about this one. Well worth a visit - then allow yourself....  more »
  • A nice place to think about old philosophy- there are 15 stones in the garden, However, you can only see 14 of them at any angle while seated. You are left to judge the meaning of this garden  more »
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