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Ichijoin
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Reviews (146)
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Reviewed September 8, 2013

Ichijoin was a peaceful, intimate place to spend a summer evening in Koyasan. We had a very quiet and clean room looking out on the mountain behind the temple. The food was fantastic, the gardens beautiful, and the monks were very kind, helpful, and welcoming to us. Our favorite part of the evening was the shared bath--it's clean, relaxing, and a perfect way to end a long day of travel.

  • Stayed: August 2013, traveled as a couple
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1  Thank robinp54
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed August 11, 2013

We really enjoyed our overnight stay at Ichijoin. The monks were really friendly and completely made you feel part of the experience. Our room was very luxurious, with all the mod cons, and the shared Japanese bath was pristine and relaxing. The food was amazing - really tasty, and loads of it! We were invited to the morning service, which we wouldn't have missed - it was a great way to start the day. Quite expensive compared to other temple lodgings in Koyasan, but well worth it, especially for the quality of food we were given - you'd pay a small fortune for it at a restaurant.

  • Stayed: August 2013, traveled as a couple
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Thank Travel_junkie84
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed July 30, 2013

A Buddhist temple stay is not for everyone but if you're browsing the Trip Advisor section on Koyasan you're more than ready to spend time at Ichijo-in. Located on the west side of town, it is one of the smaller temple lodges on Mt. Koya and has a very intimate and personal feel about it as opposed to other places that cater to large groups. The monks were all very helpful and friendly and nearly all of them spoke excellent English. ( In fact, a few of them spoke better and more colloquial English than hotel staff in Kyoto and Tokyo.)

The rooms are immaculate/spotless as are the bathrooms and onsen, which is divine. We slept very well in our traditional/tatami room, on a terrifically comfortable futon. Please note that the experience, while basic, is hardly ascetic: There's good AC in each room, a safe and a flat-screen TV; and the monks supply fresh towels, a yukata and toothbrushes each day. The onsen has all the other amenities you'll need (i.e. shampoo, conditioner, etc.)

The food served is incredible -- extremely refined and beautifully presented. Vegetarians and vegans will be in heaven and those who think they dislike tofu will be amazed at the subtlety and range of textures and flavors. (My husband is a committed carnivore and LOVED every meal.) When we were in town and mentioned we were staying at Ichojo-in to a local, he remarked that the temple was famous for its cuisine.

A few tips:
* the temple closes its gates around 9 pm so if visiting Okunoin late at night is high on your agenda, this may not be the best location for you.
*The morning service is at 8 am and is attended primarily by worshippers. This not a tourist spectacle and there's no *goma* ceremony but everyone is encouraged to attend -- and you should.
*The public baths are open late in the afternoon to the early evening. Wonderful and relaxing after a long day.
*I highly recommend spending two nights on Mr. Koya...it takes so long to get up the mountain on the local Nankai line that your experience will be rushed by staying only one evening. And one thing that the Koyasan rewards is quiet and slow reflection in the mountains.

Room Tip: Only one or two rooms have a private bathroom as far as I know...if this is important to you it will cost a bit more. But again, the facilities here are exceptionally clean and because this is not a huge lodge, you may not need to worry so much about overcrowding or privacy.
  • Stayed: July 2013, traveled as a couple
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5  Thank itinerantCalifornia
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed July 16, 2013

As others wrote this is not just an accomodation it is an experience! For anyone to come to Koya-san I recommend a temple stay if one is interested to have a authentic experience of this place. The japanese style room was nice and clean and the staff/ monks were very kind and helpfully explaining everything we wnated to know. Really special was the food!!! A one of a kind experience! If you visit Koya-san dont forget to visit the old cemetary! It has a very unique atmosphere and makes you feel like going back in time...

The morning prayer ceremony of the monks was interesting to join. Koya-san is worth a visit!
:)

Room Tip: Japanese style!
  • Stayed: July 2013, traveled as a couple
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Thank Skyliteee
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed June 11, 2013 via mobile

Ichijo-in is a traditional shukubo (Buddhist temple lodging) in the ancient sacred mountain area of Koyasan. I have visited Koyasan twice, and stayed at 4 different shukubo: Ichijo-in is by far the best I have experienced. Easy to book and pay for through Japanican site, it's $140AUD per person, which includes two elaborate meals. It's centrally located and easy to find. Little English spoken, but enough to get by.

The temple is beautiful: serene, aesthetic, immaculate. The temple wraps around gardens and ponds. The accommodation is a traditional tatami room, clearly recently renovated. Impeccable. Rooms are traditional, with no furniture other than a low table. There is a tv and free wifi. Shared bathrooms, very clean. Monks show you around the temple when you arrive, making you feel like more than some anonymous tourist: you feel like their honoured guest. After settling in with a cup of tea, you can have a wonderful Japanese (shared) bath. If you haven't experienced one, review bathing etiquette (straightforward) then go for it.

At 5pm a monk arrives in your room (you must be there then or no meal) carrying numerous tray-tables of amazing delicate Buddhist temple food. It's amazing what they make without using any animal products. The meal is not only delicious, but also highly beautiful in its presentation. Largely made from local ingredients. After dinner, the monks reappear, take away dinner, and lay out the futon beds. I slept deeply in the serene hush of the night temple. At 6am you may join the monks for their morning chanting ceremony before breakfast. This isn't a performance for tourists, it's monks doing what has been at the heart of Koyasan for over 1200 years. Breakfast also served in room, also beautiful.

I recommend Ichijo-in highly. It's a spiritual and traditional experience. And a beautiful space.

  • Stayed: June 2013
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4  Thank CadboroBrisbane
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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