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Trip Planner:   Asia  /  Japan  /  Kansai  /  Kyoto Prefecture  /  Kyoto  /  Kinkaku-ji

Kinkaku-ji, Kyoto

4.4
#2 of 51,372 in Things to do in Japan
Must see · Religious Site · Tourist Spot
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With its top two stories completely coated in pure gold leaf, Kinkaku-ji gleams in the sunlight and reflects off the pond at its edge. This Zen Buddhist temple started as a villa for a powerful statesman in the 14th century, before its conversion to a temple by the family of Shogun Ashikaga Yoshimitsu in 1397. After a high-profile arson in 1950, the temple was rebuilt in its current form with ostentatious gold leaf coating to echo the extravagance of aristocratic culture in Yoshimitsu’s time. Look out for the different historical architectural styles represented by each floor of the temple. Plan to visit Kinkaku-ji and other customer-reviewed, writer-recommended Kyoto attractions using our Kyoto online holiday planner.
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Kinkaku-ji reviews

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TripAdvisor traveler rating 4.5
17,052 reviews
Google
4.5
TripAdvisor
  • Stunning and a must see! It a nice leisure walk around the grounds with lots to see! I couldn’t take enough photos of the temple itself. Be prepared if riding city buses to wait in a long line... 
    Stunning and a must see! It a nice leisure walk around the grounds with lots to see! I couldn’t take enough photos of the temple itself. Be prepared if riding city buses to wait in a long line...  more »
  • This is a wonderful place, and still tranquil given the absence of tourists in Japan. Get there whilst you can. A leisurely walk around the site takes about 40 minutes. We arrived in time for the... 
    This is a wonderful place, and still tranquil given the absence of tourists in Japan. Get there whilst you can. A leisurely walk around the site takes about 40 minutes. We arrived in time for the...  more »
Google
  • Named Golden Temple is worth its Name. One of the most beautiful temple is Japan. Shinny clean beautifully glowing in sun looks so amazing to watch. Came twice here, must visit place while you are in Kyoto. Easily accessible by one day Kyoto bus pass.
  • First time to visit Kinkakuji in almost 30 years and this time on a bright sunny day with not a cloud in the sky. Also, it was before 11 October 2022 after which visa-free travel for most foreign inbound travel becomes possible so there were very few foreigners like me, mostly groups of young Japanese students. The taxi driver with us was a wealth of knowledge about the temple and let us know the best spots to take photos and some interesting back stories; it’s best enjoyed with a guide. I hope to see it again during winter.

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