Kyoto is filled with many shrines and temples and the first one that made the cut for our trip is the Ginkaku-ji Temple in the northeast area of the city. One of the things that I love about temples is the tranquility and serenity of the place.
You’re not just seeing the temple, and that’s it. But you’re on a sort of a mini walk, a meditation of sorts, as you reach the sites. I loved that nature is such a vital part of temples.
Ginkaku-ji, literally translated, means Silver Pavilion. And I guess in my naivety, I actually believed that the pavilion would be silver. Thus, even though I did notice this beautiful wooden pavilion (I did take a picture here), I didn’t realize that what I was looking at was it.
We did notice the very cool mountain-like mound of rocks and things. And reading the brochure, it mentioned that it’s supposed to represent Mount Fuji.
There’s a really nice pond around the pavilion. And I can only imagine how beautiful it’d be in the spring or autumn. Or even in the winter if there was snowfall.
There is a brief little walk up the hill behind the pavilion on the temple ground that gives a pretty amazing view of the city.
I’ll admit it- it was only on our way down the hill that we realized that we had already seen the not-so-silver Ginkakuji. And thus, another picture was needed – all the difference it can make when you realize what you are looking at. The name really is misleading – but it was initially supposed to be covered in silver foil. Never happened. But I think it’s quite nice the way it is – unassuming and balanced with the nature that’s around it.