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Ninna-ji Temple, Kyoto

4.6
#15 of 347 in Historic Sites in Kyoto
Historic Site Religious Site
Nestled in the hills northwest of the city sprawl, Ninna-ji Temple represents one of the more historically important sites in Japanese Buddhism, recognized as part of a World Heritage Site. Though the surviving buildings date from the early 1600s, they stand on the site of a temple complex founded in the 9th century. Pay a visit to the wooded grounds and wander among cherry trees and past ponds, taking time to marvel at the swooped rooftops, intricate paneling, and ornate carvings that decorate structures like the head priest's residence and main pagoda. Keep in mind that you'll need to pay separate admission fees for some parts of the temple. Plan your Ninna-ji Temple visit and explore what else you can see and do in Kyoto using our Kyoto vacation route planner.
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Reviews
TripAdvisor Traveler Rating
953 reviews
Google
4.5
TripAdvisor
  • August 12, 2017
    I love this place. It has a beautiful garden and the staff are friendly (not always the case in temples or Kyoto). They even make a point of saying that photos are ok. I've been a few times and each t...  more »
  • August 11, 2017
    I finally went ninna-ji Temple wanted to go to. Kondo was covered for repair, but still good to go. Kondo is also fun next time. You feel that you can forget the everyday things and watching the five-storied pagoda garden is really lovely. It was a great place for relaxing.
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  • August 11, 2017
    Kinkaku-ji, ryoan-ji Temple near. Walk from the ryoan-ji Temple, about 10 minutes. Surprisingly few tourists. Feel it from the large temple of everything.
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Google
  • March 21, 2017
    There is a fee of 600 yen per adult to enter the UNESCO heritage listed temple grounds. You'll find there are many lovely buildings to admire within the neatly kept grounds, such as the five storied pagoda and the bell tower. You are only able to view the pagoda and the bell tower from outside however. You'll be given a map of the grounds so you can easily map out how to walk about the temple grounds. The entrance fee will allow you to explore all the grounds and go explore inside the temple (shoes must be taken off).
  • May 2, 2017
    Lovely cherry blossom spot, but the rest of the shrine is fairly boring. The Golden Shrine next door is much more beautiful. Also, transportation to this area through the bus system is cumbersome via the bus lines.
  • October 9, 2016
    Beautiful and underrated temple. The grounds are quite large, with some impressive buildings and a beautiful 17th-century pagoda as the main attraction. The grounds are far less crowded than other "top 10" temples/world heritage sites in Kyoto, which allows for some great photos any day of the week. I recommend arriving late in the afternoon (3-4pm) so you can watch the bhikkhu perform their late afternoon prayers.
  • June 22, 2016
    Beautiful quiet spot away from the big crowds. 1000 yen to enter the main palace which has a stunning zen garden and nice art makes it worth every bit. Many more temples amongst the grounds are free to wander around in a peaceful and relaxing atmosphere.
  • December 3, 2016
    A fantastic temple with many lovely sites. The five-storey pagoda rivals that of the Toji.

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Where to stay in Kyoto

Kyoto spoils visitors for choice when it comes to good accommodations, offering everything from traditional ryokans to luxury Western-style hotels. In a city used to receiving foreign travelers, you'll find that most establishments know exactly what to offer tourists and how to help newcomers to the area. To avoid paying premium prices during the cherry blossom season, consider staying in Osaka, located just a 30-minute train ride away. If you must stay in Kyoto itself, keep in mind that centrally located hotels charge more than those in the outer neighborhoods.
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