There is another large temple in the Kyoto Higashiyama area, famous for Kiyomizu Temple and Yasaka Shrine. “Kodaiji” is close to the Kiyomizu-dera approach and there are many guides, so you may have heard of the name.
The garden is also wonderful, and it has become a scenic spot where the name appears in the cherry blossoms and autumn leaves season. The garden and surroundings are lit up during the night of the cherry blossoms and autumn leaves season.
Historically, this temple was opened by Nene, the lawful wife of Hideyoshi TOYOTOMI (samurai in the war period), and is also a buried temple. For this reason, Kodaiji has been relocated to Hojo (main hall), tea room, makeup palace from Fushimi Castle after Hideyoshi Toyotomi’s retirement, and there are also Hideyoshi and Nene mausoleums.
One of the highlights of “Kodaiji Temple” is the weeping cherry tree of the garden at the front of the hojo (Hashintei Garden). Nene is said to be a hand-planted weeping cherry tree, and the current cherry tree is the fourth generation. This is also a cherry blossom spot in spring.
Kodaiji Temple is not only a stunning garden, but also an event. The light up of the night view in spring and autumn is a must-see. A completely different landscape is waiting for you at day and night. Lights up after sunset, and you can watch until 22:00 (21:30 reception closed). Visitors can enjoy watching until late. With projection mapping and music, the front of the hojo is just like a microcosm.
Unlike the daytime cherry blossoms, the cherry blossoms sparkle and glossy as they talk to your heart. Cherry blossoms are often seen outdoors, but Kodaiji can also be seen from inside the building. Sit back and enjoy as much as you like.
Japanese gardens are very different from Western gardens. It is a place where nature is incorporated into the composition of the garden. The garden of Kodaiji Temple is also landscaping in that way, and when the moonlight shines, it changes completely to the daytime atmosphere. It turns into a perfect scenery. The garden of “Karesansui” (dry landscape), created by Enshu KOBORI, a gardener during the Momoyama period. In the center is “Kangetsudai” which was relocated from Fushimi Castle. The full moon and the crescent moon have their own tastes.
The precincts of Kodaiji are large and there are many famous tea rooms. “Ihoan” made by Shoeki HAIYA in honor of Yoshino Tayu. Both “Karakasatei”, where the ship entered and exited, and the unusual two-story “Shiguretei” were both tea rooms preferred by SEN no Rikyu. They are designated as important cultural properties.
Kodaiji Temple has relatively few tourists in spring. However, the autumn night view is very crowded. If you are planning a night visit during busy times, we recommend that you purchase tickets in advance during the day.
A gorgeous temple with a vast site
Kodai-ji (Kodai Zen Temple) is a temple of Rinzai sect Kenninji school which Nene, who was a lawful wife of Hideyoshi TOYOTOMI (She was called ‘Kodaiin’ after becoming a nun), built in 1606 to pray for the repose of her husband’s soul. Hideyoshi wished for the unification of the whole country, and finally he became Kanpaku (chief adviser to the Emperor). Nene kept on supporting Hideyoshi for life.
At the time of construction of the Kodai-ji Temple, Ieyasu TOKUGAWA also cast a lot of money, it was a gorgeous temple with a vast site of over 300,000 square meters. After that, the scale was reduced by repeated fires and the Haibutsu-kishaku (a movement to abolish Buddhism) that was taking place in the Meiji era, but the six buildings designated as Important Cultural Properties and Kodai-ji Makie (Japanese lacquer) are still left now.
Enter the temple and walk down the route in order, there is a small building. This is a small tea room called “Iho-an”, which is said to be a tea ceremony built by Joeki Haiya, a rich trader of the Edo period, to commemorate his wife Yoshino Dayu. When crossing Iho-an, the garden spreads in front of you. The garden created by Enshu Kobori has Garyuchi Pond in the east and Engetsuchi Pond in the west, across the building called “Kaizan-do Hall” and is designated as a historical site of the country and the scenic garden. On the Engetsuchi Pond there is a “Kangetsudai” (Moon-viewing Pavilion) cherished by Hideyoshi, the moon to watch from there is very tender and heal the hearts of the viewers.
At Kodai-ji Temple, seasonal tea ceremonies are held throughout the year. This is due to Hideyoshi loving tea and tea ceremony well held. For that reason, there are several tea rooms in Kodai-ji Temple.
In the “Midnight tea ceremony at autumn night” held in the middle of autumn moon, the tea that enjoying the moon and insect sounds is exceptionally delicious.
The temple of “Nene”
The “Kodai-ji Temple”, which is known as the “Nene no Tera” (the temple of Nene) (“Nene” was the legal wife of Hideyoshi Toyotomi), was built by Nene to pray for the repose of Hideyoshi’s soul supported by Ieyasu Tokugawa.
Many important cultural properties
There are many Cha-shitsu (tea-ceremony rooms) and many important cultural properties in the vast precinct, it is one of the points the beauty of the view from the hill. Above all, in the temple of Otamaya (mausoleum) used the decoration called “Kodai-ji Maki-e” (lacquer), which is the splendid Momoyama style, you can see the figure that Nene equals Hideyoshi peacefully.
Because Kodai-ji has a strong imression of Nene, it has a woman’s touch and elegant feeling.
It is a luxurious composition because it was a place for herself to spend later years.
Famous illuminated spot
The temple is also a famous illuminated spot to view sakura (cherry) flowers in spring and colored leaves in autumn, and it pleases the eyes of the tourist.
It is in a most popular spot
The location is good, too, it is in a most popular spot where is at the foot of a hill called “Higashiyama Sanju-Roppo” (36 mountain range) with Kiyomizu-dera Temple, Kennin-ji temple, Yasaka-jinja Shrine which the Gion festival is held in.
|Name:||Kodai-ji (Kodai Zen Temple)|
|Adresse:||Shimokawaracho 526 Kyoto Higashiyama-ku, Kyoto 605-0825 Japan|
|Access:||Keihan-honsen Line “Gion-Shijo-eki Station” (10 minutes walk)|
|Price:||600 yen (Adult)|
250 yen (Under 18 years old)
Free (Under 12 years old)
Please refer the official web page.