Sunday, 8 January 2012

Japan Take Two: Kyoto, temples galore!

Day two in Kyoto and we made sure we got an early start to avoid the heat as we were heading out to some of the most popular temples in Kyoto, the confusingly similarly named Ginkaku and Kinkaku temples. Ginkajku temple was built as a retreat for shogun Ashikaga Yoshimasa in 1482 to get away from the hubbub of the civil war, after his death it was converted into a Buddhist temple. Ginkaku has stunning gardens including white sand piled up to represent mount Fuji, raked gravel zen gardens and mossy woodlands. The woodlands provided perfect shade from the sun so they were very pleasant and relaxing to stroll around.  

Raked rows of sand in Ginkaju temple grounds

The carefully smoothed pile of sand is supposed to represent mount Fuji, it was being maintained by a guy with a watering can and plastering board.