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Saihoji Temple

56 Matsuo Jingatanicho, Nishikyo-ku, Kyoto, Kyoto Prefecture 615-8286, Japan
+81 75-391-3631
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Ranked #22 of 383 Attractions in Kyoto
Certificate of Excellence 2014
Type: Religious Sites, Gardens
64 visitor photos
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72 reviews from our community

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Date | Rating
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English first
Anchorage, Alaska, United States
Top Contributor
102 reviews 102 reviews
36 attraction reviews
33 helpful votes 33 helpful votes
4 of 5 stars Reviewed October 28, 2014 NEW

The grounds were very peaceful. A walk around the pond was great. If you have a problem with uneven surfaces or mobility issues then a walk around the pond/ garden is not recommended. For those able bodied, then the walk around is a must. There are transition, stone steps on one side of the walk.

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Guildford, United Kingdom
Top Contributor
87 reviews 87 reviews
27 attraction reviews
44 helpful votes 44 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed October 27, 2014 NEW

As access is limited (you must apply by postcard in advance and receive an invitation) it has the huge advantage of very few tourists. The moss garden and water garden are not huge, but very beautiful. If you are lucky with the light and choose the afternoon session, you will get some incredible pictures. The bamboos are also spectacular. Highly... More

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Yokohama, Japan
Senior Contributor
22 reviews 22 reviews
16 attraction reviews
9 helpful votes 9 helpful votes
4 of 5 stars Reviewed October 24, 2014

You need to make a reservation to visit this temple, and shakyo (hand copying of sutras) is the duty for all visitors. Also need to pay 3000 JPY per 1 person. Once we finish it, we can walk around the garden. This garden is pretty huge, and everything is covered by moss, therefore, it is called "moss temple". It takes... More

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Sydney
Top Contributor
260 reviews 260 reviews
119 attraction reviews
147 helpful votes 147 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed October 19, 2014

Over the past 40 years I have been to Saihoji many times, one of my first early morning places to visit in Kyoto. I would make sure to arrive early to catch the morning light on the moss and to appreciate the quiet stillness of the garden save for the odd gardener sweeping the moss clean of leaves and tree... More

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Tel Aviv
Top Contributor
59 reviews 59 reviews
15 attraction reviews
47 helpful votes 47 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed September 7, 2014

Though you will see so many different temples in Kyoto, this one is very unique and memorable. Totally worth the price, arrangements to visit it and getting there by bus. I booked myself by sending them a letter few months before my visit with few possible dates to visit and in advance pre-paid envelope back to my address. In few... More

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Beltsville, Maryland
2 reviews
2 helpful votes 2 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed June 24, 2014

Getting there, we took the 73 bus from Kyoto station (230 yen); it left the station around 11:45 and we arrived at the Kokedera bus stop at 12:55 with five minutes to spare before our 1:00 visit. So if you are taking the bus from Kyoto, make sure you give yourself plenty of time to make the trip.

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Minneapolis, Minnesota
Senior Contributor
22 reviews 22 reviews
7 attraction reviews
26 helpful votes 26 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed June 7, 2014

I very much enjoyed my visit here, and comments below from previous visitors were very helpful. This is my opportunity to add more. First, if you are a decent walker, it’s easy to get here by public transportation. Take the Hankyu line to the Kamikatsura station. If you get the 12:30 train from Katsura to Kamikatsura, you arrive at 12:32,... More

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Johannesburg
Senior Contributor
45 reviews 45 reviews
24 attraction reviews
25 helpful votes 25 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed May 7, 2014

On of my best experiences in Kyoto. Due to efforts in trying to preserve the moss, the entrance fee to the garden is the most expensive in Kyoto at 3000 Yen, and you need to do a reservation process before, which I did through http://www.saihoji-kokedera-reservation.com, with no issues. There were more people than I expected however it was still very... More

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Salt Lake City, Utah
Top Contributor
55 reviews 55 reviews
32 attraction reviews
47 helpful votes 47 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed May 3, 2014

Also called Kokodera, you HAVE to take part in a religious ceremony copying calligraphy in order to be allowed entrance, but it's to offer your own prayer toward the betterment of the world, family, people, etc, and then after the ceremony, you get to wander the most beautiful moss garden imaginable. Eerie, ethereal and lovely and plush. I couldn't resist.... More

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London, United Kingdom
Senior Contributor
33 reviews 33 reviews
26 attraction reviews
13 helpful votes 13 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed April 18, 2014

In order to visit this temple you need to write at least 7 days before hand and apply for permission. Granting of permission is on the condition that you undertake an activity which is usually Buddhist sutra writing, this was a very peaceful calming experience and although many struggled with sitting on the floor to trace the writing and write... More

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