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“Rain sodden but still enjoyable visit”
Review of Kinkakuji Temple

Kinkakuji Temple
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$18.23*
and up
Kyoto Sightseeing Hop-On Hop-Off Loop Bus
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$86.85*
and up
Day Trip by Bus to Kyoto, Nara and Kobe from Osaka
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$67.55*
and up
Day Trip by Bus to Kyoto from Osaka
Ranked #3 of 1,134 things to do in Kyoto
Certificate of Excellence
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Attraction details
Owner description: One of Kyoto's most famous attractions, this temple was originally built in 1397 as a residence for shogun Ashikaga Yoshimitsu. The structure was completely covered in gold leaf, earning it the name Golden Pavilion.
Reviewed April 20, 2014

This was the first place I visited in Kyoto and unfortunately it was a morning of torrential rain (only 1 of 2 half days out of 10 I hasten to add!). The Golden Pavilion is clearly quite a sight and I would have loved to have seen it in the dry on a sunny day with the reflections in the lake but it wasn't to be. The gardens here and other buildings are not as extensive as elsewhere in the city and it takes a while to get there but I'm sure it should remain on the must-see list though perhaps not on a wet day.

1  Thank SeasonedTraveller055
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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5,153 - 5,157 of 12,775 reviews

Reviewed April 20, 2014

Definite must-see for visitors to Tokyo. The picturesque setting makes it easy to get beautiful pictures. It does get packed during holiday season though, so may be best seen off peak.

Thank wengya
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed April 19, 2014

Kinkakuji deserves it's place on all the "must see" lists when visiting Kyoto; it's simply breathtaking. We were there in the spring, but it would be beautiful in any season. The Golden Pavilion is reflected beautifully in the pond; photos do not do it justice.

Kinkakuji is in northern Kyoto and is accessible via bus but not subway. We elected to take a taxi there, which cost just over 2,000 yen coming from the area in Kyoto near Yasaka Shrine. The taxi ride took 20-25 minutes on a weekday morning and we arrived at Kinkakuji just before it opened at 0900. I highly recommend arriving early; there weren't that many people and we were able to get some incredible photos without other people in them. Aside from the Golden Pavilion, there's not much to see here, so you can take a leisurely stroll around the pond and the rest of the site in 45 minutes or less. Admission fee is 400 yen per person. After visiting, I suggest you walk 15-20 minutes to Ryoanji to see the famous rock garden there.

Thank Tuffet119
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed April 19, 2014

A must visit temple. It is very calming, breathtaking, memorable. I still remember how the sunlight magically hit the golden exterior. Compared to the Ginkaku-ji (Silver Pavilion), this Kinkaku-ji (Golden Pavilion) has definitely more beautiful golden building, but the landscape, Ginkaku-ji's the better one imho. Hopefully you get to visit here on less crowded times. It gets quite difficult to take picture of yourself alone with the temple. Take the 500/550 yen bus ticket package for the whole day if you wanna do temple hopping, some hotels provide the tickets and try the Kyoto Station. Because for one bus trip from one temple to another cost 220 yen flat, if you wanna do 3 or more temples by bus, the 500/550 yen bus ticket package is definitely a smart way to go.

Thank Stella P
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed April 19, 2014

My wife and I visited Kinkakuji in late March 2014, and it was very crowded even on a rainy day.

Kinkakuji is a huge area which consists of the main temple (the main structure covered in gold leaf), a number of other secondary structures (prayer's hall, bell tower, souvenir shops etc) and numerous ponds/mini waterfalls. The whole area has a calm and serene feeling to it and we spent almost an hour walking in it.

The main temple is beautiful, especially so if you can get a picture which captures its reflection in the pond. Spend some time scouting for the best spot to snap a picture and you will not be disappointed.

How to get there:
We took a train from Osaka (Namba station) to Karasuma station, and then to Kitaoji station. From Kitaoji train station, you can take either bus 101, 102, 204 or 205 to get to Kinkakuji. Do not worry if you don't understand Japanese, there is a dual-language map (Japanese and English) on the digital screen at the front of the bus, clearly displaying the next station that the bus is going to stop at. All the above public transport is covered under the Kansai Thru Pass.

Thank hkeng
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.

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