Toji Temple, just a short walk from Kyoto Station, is the official name Kyoogokoku-ji Temple, one of the most popular tourist spots in Kyoto. There is the five-storied pagoda which is a symbolic existence of Kyoto, and it is also known as a cherry blossom or autumn leaves point. Toji Temple, one of the most famous sightseeing spots in Kyoto, was built in 796 when the capital was transfered to Heiankyo from Heijokyo, to protect the capital. It is a Toji Temple built in pair with Sai-ji Temple on the east and west of Rajomon Gate which is the main gate of Heiankyo, but the Sai-ji Temple seems to have disappeared after the Warring States Period.
In 1994, Toji Temple was registered as a UNESCO World Cultural Heritage as “Cultural Heritage of Ancient Kyoto”. Because it has many national treasures and important cultural assets, it was judged to have historical and cultural value.
The five-storied pagoda was built in 826 by Kukai of Kobo Daishi (posthumous title of the priest Kukai) following Kondo Hall. It was not finished during the life of Kukai, it was completed about 50 years after he died. The height is 54.8 meters, boasting the highest height in Japan as a wooden tower. It was destroyed many times after its creation and the existing ones were rebuilt by Tokugawa Iemitsu in 1644.
Kondo Hall was first built at the time of foundation of Toji Temple. It was destroyed in Tsuchi ikki (or Do ikki, peasant uprising) in 1486, and it was not rebuilt for nearly a century. Existing Kondo Hall was rebuilt by Hideyoshi Toyotomi, it is designated as a national treasure.
Toji Temple is famous also for the beauty of autumnal leaves, and lighting is performed at night at the time of the autumnal leaves. Lighting will be performed from the end of October to early in December every year. It will be lit between 18:30 and 21:30.
Toji Temple has many areas that can be enjoyed throughout the year, but you can enjoy even more when you visit the event such as cherry blossom light up, autumn leaves, “Kobo Market” etc. When a special exhibition is held, there are times when you can see non-public places usually, so please check with the official web page etc. Besides that there are plenty of places to see.
|Address:||Kujocho 1 Kyoto Minami-ku, Kyoto 601-8473 Japan|
|Access:||Kintetsu Kyoto-sen Line “Toji-eki Station” (10 minutes walk)|
|Price/Charge:||The admission fees vary depending on facilities. It also depends on the season. (From 500 yen)
Please refer the official web page.