Kyoto Sights

Myoshin-ji (Myoshin Temple)

  • 1 Hanazono Myoshinji-cho Map It
  • Ukyo-ku
  • Religious Building/Site/Shrine

Published 12/10/2015

Fodor's Review

A Zen temple complex with 47 subtemples, Myoshin-ji contains many valuable treasures. One of them, a painting of a coiling, writhing dragon by Tan'yu (1602–74), a major artist of the Kano school of painting, graces the ceiling of the main temple's Hatto lecture hall. The dragon, a revered animal in Asia, symbolizes might and success. You can apply at the hall for a 20-minute tour of it and the temple's bathhouse, where after scraping off the grime loosened by the heat and steam, monks rinsed off with buckets of water that flowed down the slanted floors.

Japan's oldest bell is in daily use in Myoshin-ji, having tolled out the hour for meditation since 698. Shunko-in, one of the 47 subtemples, has a Hidden Christian bell. Made in Portugal in 1577, the bell was placed in Nanban-ji Church, Kyoto's first Christian church. Established in 1576, the church was the center of Catholic missionary activity until eligious persecution brought about its destruction in 1587.

Sight Information


1 Hanazono Myoshinji-cho, Kyoto, 616-8035, Japan

Map It



Sight Details:

  • ¥500
  • Nov.–Mar., daily 9:10–3:40; Apr.–Oct., daily 9:10–4:40

Published 12/10/2015


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