Kyoto Travel Guide

Kyoto Sights

Honen-in (Honen Temple)

  • Shishigatani-Goshonodan-cho Map It
  • Sakyo-ku
  • Religious Building/Site/Shrine

Published 12/20/2010

Fodor's Review

South of Ginkaku Temple on the Philosopher's Path lie the serene grounds of a once rural temple. Tall spindly bush camellia and slender maple trees form a canopy over the long entry path. Inside the temple's thatched gateway, two long regular mounds of sand are formed into shapes symbolizing the changing seasons. While strolling through the verdant garden, you may notice the tombs of several notables, including novelist Junichiro Tanizaki (1886–1965), economist Hajime Kawakami (1879–1946), and artist Heihachiro Fukuda (1892–1974).

The temple, built in 1680, is on a site chosen in the 13th century by Honen, founder of the populist Jodo sect of Buddhism. This is a training temple. Year-round, monks place 25 flowers before the Amida Buddha statue in the main hall, representing the 25 bodhisattvas who accompany the Buddha to receive the souls of the newly deceased.

Sight Information


Shishigatani-Goshonodan-cho, Kyoto, Kyoto-fu, 606-8422, Japan

Map It



Sight Details:

  • Free

Published 12/20/2010


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