Nanzen-ji Temple
Nanzen-ji Temple
4.5
8:45 AM - 5:00 PM
Monday
8:45 AM - 5:00 PM
Tuesday
8:45 AM - 5:00 PM
Wednesday
8:45 AM - 5:00 PM
Thursday
8:45 AM - 5:00 PM
Friday
8:45 AM - 5:00 PM
Saturday
8:45 AM - 5:00 PM
Sunday
8:45 AM - 5:00 PM
About
This Zen Buddhist temple was converted from a former residence of Emperor Kameyama upon his death. The beautiful grounds include several buildings, hiking trails and a classic Zen garden.
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  • carloscharmy
    Bangkok, Thailand781 contributions
    5.0 of 5 bubbles
    Highly recommended
    Nanzen-ji Temple is a rainy day delight! Despite the weather, the experience was fantastic. Sipping matcha while admiring the garden was a moment of peace. Exploring the vast grounds was a joy. Highly recommended for a fulfilling and serene Kyoto visit.
    Visited March 2023
    Written July 21, 2023
  • hfot2 🌸🍁🌸
    Vermont7,510 contributions
    5.0 of 5 bubbles
    Return visit to an old friend
    We visit Nanzen-ji on every trip to Japan, whether for sakura or momiji. Our spring 2023 trip was no exception. The grounds are so familiar to us now, that we know what we will see around each corner. We were amazed at the scarcity of tourists. The blossoms were just at peak and yet we felt as if we had the place to ourselves. It has never been empty like this before. Since this is the first sakura season since Japan reopened after COVID closures, we feared the grounds would be packed and almost didn't visit this year. We were so glad we decided to walk here from the Okazaki Canal.
    Visited March 2023
    Traveled as a couple
    Written January 2, 2024
  • tracey k
    Redmond, Washington756 contributions
    5.0 of 5 bubbles
    Well worth exploring
    This temple anchors one end of the Philosophers Walk, which, combined, makes for a delightful outing. The temples roots as an old Imperial palace are evident in the number of buildings and grandeur of the site. You could easily spend a couple hours here exploring. The walk ip to the Temple is lined with little shops and eateries. A taxi stand I noticed was near the gate. So while my main focus was hopping on the Philosophers Walk, I delighted in spending time here.
    Visited April 2024
    Traveled as a couple
    Written April 7, 2024
These reviews are the subjective opinion of Tripadvisor members and not of TripAdvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews.

Most Recent: Reviews ordered by most recent publish date in descending order.

Detailed Reviews: Reviews ordered by recency and descriptiveness of user-identified themes such as wait time, length of visit, general tips, and location information.

Popular mentions

4.5
4.5 of 5 bubbles2,193 reviews
Excellent
1,089
Very good
893
Average
197
Poor
10
Terrible
4

razorbagel
Baltimore, MD41 contributions
3.0 of 5 bubbles
Feb 2020
the aqueduct was probably my favorite part of this large temple complex. unfortunately, many of the buildings had closed early (earlier than usual - we'd checked google just in case) on the day we visited, so we were not able to explore as fully as we might have wanted. the gate is very large, although we walked past it initially due to the way we approached the temple from the train station. although i enjoyed nanzen-ji, it is not my favorite temple in kyoto.
Written March 5, 2020
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews as part of our industry-leading trust & safety standards. Read our transparency report to learn more.

hfot2 🌸🍁🌸
Vermont7,510 contributions
5.0 of 5 bubbles
Mar 2023 • Couples
We visit Nanzen-ji on every trip to Japan, whether for sakura or momiji. Our spring 2023 trip was no exception.

The grounds are so familiar to us now, that we know what we will see around each corner.

We were amazed at the scarcity of tourists. The blossoms were just at peak and yet we felt as if we had the place to ourselves.

It has never been empty like this before. Since this is the first sakura season since Japan reopened after COVID closures, we feared the grounds would be packed and almost didn't visit this year. We were so glad we decided to walk here from the Okazaki Canal.
Written January 2, 2024
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews as part of our industry-leading trust & safety standards. Read our transparency report to learn more.

Zimminaroundtheworld
Okinawa Prefecture, Japan1,946 contributions
5.0 of 5 bubbles
Nov 2022
Nanzen-ji Temple is one of Kyoto's temples that has a lot of visitors but doesn't get the amount of traffic like some of the other popular temples, which I find to be great! Nanzen-ji is just as beautiful as the rest, but it's further away. This temple was gorgeous during autumn. I recommend visiting the garden here, especially for fall. There were a few paid parts of the temple but visitors can freely walk the grounds.
Written November 17, 2022
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews as part of our industry-leading trust & safety standards. Read our transparency report to learn more.

carloscharmy
Bangkok, Thailand781 contributions
5.0 of 5 bubbles
Mar 2023
Nanzen-ji Temple is a rainy day delight! Despite the weather, the experience was fantastic. Sipping matcha while admiring the garden was a moment of peace. Exploring the vast grounds was a joy. Highly recommended for a fulfilling and serene Kyoto visit.
Written July 21, 2023
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews as part of our industry-leading trust & safety standards. Read our transparency report to learn more.

gsmyles
San Diego, CA206 contributions
5.0 of 5 bubbles
Nov 2022
If you like crowds of all types- come here. The aqueducts were such a surprise and it is a treasure to be able to walk on them inside the forest where it is more peaceful and tranquil.
There are many brilliant trees to photograph and you can get lost in all of the smaller temples and shrines.
Written November 27, 2022
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews as part of our industry-leading trust & safety standards. Read our transparency report to learn more.

tracey k
Redmond, WA756 contributions
5.0 of 5 bubbles
Apr 2024 • Couples
This temple anchors one end of the Philosophers Walk, which, combined, makes for a delightful outing. The temples roots as an old Imperial palace are evident in the number of buildings and grandeur of the site. You could easily spend a couple hours here exploring. The walk ip to the Temple is lined with little shops and eateries. A taxi stand I noticed was near the gate. So while my main focus was hopping on the Philosophers Walk, I delighted in spending time here.
Written April 7, 2024
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews as part of our industry-leading trust & safety standards. Read our transparency report to learn more.

Gary W
22 contributions
5.0 of 5 bubbles
Oct 2019
I visit Nanzen-ji every time I'm in Kyoto. It is the best of the zen temples. Keep in mind, being zen, it is fairly austere when it comes to architecture. The main gate is impressive and the view from the top is worth traversing the stairs. The grounds are meticulously kept and the gardens surrounding the buildings are worth the trip.
Written October 30, 2019
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews as part of our industry-leading trust & safety standards. Read our transparency report to learn more.

Byngette
Woodstock, Canada4,067 contributions
5.0 of 5 bubbles
Sep 2019 • Couples
Out of all the temples we visited, this was one of our favorite for sure! It is simply emerged in nature, with little streams flowing along the sides of the road as you walk in and another waterfall tucked away once you get in. It's also actually a Zen Buddhist Temple.
It's very peaceful here and seems to go on forever. The main entrance leads up some stairs to more buildings and statues, then you have a cemetery at the very back. It's behind a gate, but still beautiful from afar. You can even walk along a path once you go past the cemetery and it looked like it just keeps going forever. Maybe there was another temple up there, but we were too hot to go further.
The grounds were huge for this place as it is and we found that we couldn't even find the zen garden unfortunately. I really wanted to see it. Maybe it was closed for the day, or it could have been that it was behind the gate that we had to pay to get through and since we didn't pay, just didn't get to see it. That's probably likely.
Regardless, it was very cool to walk here. It wasnt very far from the subway and the wall was really nice. Maybe 10 minutes? Easy to walk here from there.
There is a little gift shop as you are leaving and they sell ice cream and souvenirs. We got some delicious ice cream before heading out.
Written September 14, 2019
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews as part of our industry-leading trust & safety standards. Read our transparency report to learn more.

lovebug163
Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia176 contributions
5.0 of 5 bubbles
Apr 2019 • Solo
Easy to get to. Take the JR train from Hakata station, sit back and enjoy. The old train officer at Nanzoin mae stop will gladly give you walking instructions to the temple. Past shops, musical bridge, traffic light to alight slopes with steps. Keep walking till you reach the top and your eyes rest on the Sleeping Buddha which outweighs and outsize the Buddha statues in Kamakura & Nara. There is a sheltered area in front of the statue for you to meditate and say your prayers. If you wish to walk into the statue, pay Y500 and select one wish. Walk into the room where the Buddha relics are kept, say your prayer and then exit. Enjoy the fresh air, absolute peace and quiet
Written April 14, 2019
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews as part of our industry-leading trust & safety standards. Read our transparency report to learn more.

Frantzces L
44 contributions
5.0 of 5 bubbles
Sep 2017 • Solo
This temple is amazeballs! Nanzen-ji is a Buddhist temple and it was founded in the middle Kamakura period in 1291. It was destroyed by fire in 1393, 1447, and 1467, rebuilt in 1597, and expanded in the Edo era. It’s pretty massive and so beautiful to look at. It’s surrounded by other temples, a cemetery, tons of forest, and streams. It’s a great place to stroll.
Written September 26, 2017
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews as part of our industry-leading trust & safety standards. Read our transparency report to learn more.

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Nanzen-ji Temple, Kyoto

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