"Myomanji Temple" Top 5 Page for this destination Myomanji Temple Tip by Rabbityama
Myomanji Temple, Kyoto: 1 reviews and 5 photos
Myomanji Temple is a unique site among Japanese temples for its Busshari Daito, an Indian religious structure. This kind of architecture is rarely found in Japan. That is what made me want to visit, but other features make it even more worthwhile.
From the bridge at the entrance to the temple grounds with nice rock gardens surrounding the central pathway amidst the Indian stupa, Myomanji makes quite an impression. The stupa is actually a rather new addition but features a gold statue inside and small Buddhist statues and carvings all over the outside.
Once you enter the actual temple, it continues to impress with its Snow Garden (yuki no niwa). It is said to be one of the top 3 snow gardens in Japan and as you might expect, is said to be best viewed in winter however, it was very beautiful during my autumn visit. Like many gardens, it uses the mountains as a backdrop and the garden itself is meant to represent a mountain scene. Many Japanese gardens strive for simplicity, but Myomanji's garden is noticeably busier with many bushes and plants bunched together with stones and lanterns.
The temple also features some ancient artifacts and treasures. The bell is particularly special because it is connected to a love story in which a monk had relations with a woman and promised to return for her but purposefully went home a different way. The woman realized he tricked her and turned into a snake and went after him. He hid under the bell but she wrapped herself around the bell and made it so hot that it burned him alive. She then killed herself from the heartbreak. That is the legend surrounding the bell.
The visit ends in the main building where you'll see the objects of worship (Buddhist statues, of course).
Entrance is 300 yen.
Directions: It's a short walk from Kino Station on the Eizan Railway Line. You could also go to Kokusai Kaikan Subway Station and walk from there, although it's a bit further.
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