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Heian Shrine, Kyoto

Historic Site · Hidden Gem · Landmark
Noted for its scarlet tori gates, Heian Shrine remains one of the most important Shinto sites in Kyoto. Built in 1895 to celebrate the city’s 1,100th anniversary, and relatively new in comparison to similar religious sites, the shrine was designed to resemble a smaller replica of the original Heian Palace. Step into the complex through the large, vividly colored gate, and explore its picturesque grounds. Roam the courtyards and Chinese-style buildings, or, for a small fee, enter the gardens that encircle a large pond, and stroll along stone paths lined by weeping cherry trees and maples. Add Heian Shrine to your Kyoto travel itinerary, and discover new vacation ideas by using our Kyoto online visit planner.
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Heian Shrine reviews

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1,220 reviews
  • I have visited many times and brought many friends. The garden behind the temple is one of my favorite places in Kyoto. The signature stepping stones across the pond is particularly intriguing...  more »
  • The entrance to the temple is elegant with a majestic 24 m high Torii gate. We spent many hours wandering around the Shrine garden and enjoyed the peaceful and serene environment a lot. There were...  more »
  • Heian Shrine was built in 1895 to commemorate the 1100th anniversary of the founding of Kyoto. It is replica of the first Imperial Palace. A peaceful place to stroll and people watch. While we...  more »
  • One of the newer shrines in Kyoto. It's nice and large with very spacious grounds. Because of that it's not as overcrowded as many other places. Behind the shrine there's a beautiful large garden with ponds. However, the entrance fee to the gardens is 600 ¥ while the entrance to the shrine is free. But I highly recommend visiting the gardens too.
  • Beautiful shrine with a large, peaceful garden to walk around in in all seasons. You can also enjoy some simple snacks in the souvenir shop located next to the shrine.
  • A symbol of Kyoto. While the shrine itself makes up only a small proportion of the area, it is still very big. However, the expansive open areas can still get very crowded on special occasions. Watch out for signs where you cannot take photographs.
  • Beautiful garden inside this shrine. Not to miss especially during spring and early summer. In April, in this garden one can find the late blooming cherry blossom, kanzan sakura. If you miss the someo yoshino, then the kanzan sakura really worths the visit. In June the irises are beautiful. Look around the ponds.
  • Pretty good. tier 2 attraction in Kyoto but that's only because Kyoto is packed with top attractions. The garden is nice though there are prettier gardens that can be enjoyed for free (Nijo if I recall correctly?) Oh, the matcha ice cream opposite is pretty weak. Skip that

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