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Ninna-ji Temple, Kyoto

(4.5/5 based on 850+ reviews on the web)
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
  • Nice temple, very well kept. Outside structure is beautiful, but as always, not much inside. You can sit on the wooden path and relax a bit! 
  • Pagoda built in the 1600 's, the 55meter high. opportunity for admission on the first floor, incredible woodworking when one thinks of when it is built. There are two other buildings in the same temple that contains relics, definitely worth one visit here
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  • How to get there? Getting to the temple is not that easy (w.r.t the other places in Kyoto). However, you can still make it in less than 45min (public transport). We took a taxi from Kinkakuji to Ninna...  more »
Google
  • 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.
  • 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.
  • Beautiful walk around a Japanese garden with views of the pagoda, ponds, and raked gravel. I recommend making the effort to go early as to miss most of the crowds. It's only a short walk to Ryōan-ji, that's well worth a visit too!
  • This Ninnaji Temple is one of the designated World Hritage sites in Kyoto. The front gate is a massive structure striking out on the Road of Kinukake which is leading all the way to the Pond of Hirosawa near Daikakuji Temple.
  • Paying the admission fee for the "palace" is worth it, as both the building itself (eg spectacular paintings on the wall), as well as the gardens connected to the palace are splendid. Also enjoyed strolling the rest of the temple grounds...