Japan Kyoto Fushimi

Komyoin Temple

Zen oasis, the Rainbow Moss Temple

Photo of Komyoin Temple, Japan (Komyo-in, Hashintei (Garden) -3 (November 2016) by Tetsuhiro Terada)

Komyoin Temple, founded in 1391, showcases the profound cultural and spiritual heritage of Japan through its iconic gardens and meditative spaces, and is affectionately known as the Rainbow Moss Temple.

About Komyoin Temple

Komyoin Temple, a Zen sanctuary in Kyoto, epitomizes Japan’s cultural and spiritual heritage. Established in 1391 as a subsidiary of Tofukuji Temple, its main garden, Hashin-tei, was crafted in 1939 by landscape architect Shigemori Mirei, who also designed the Hojo Garden at Tofukuji. Hashin-tei is a karesansui garden, with a white sand base and three stones representing islands, set in a diagonal line. This minimalist design is complemented by cloud-shaped pruned shrubs and the Rogetsuan tea pavilion, designed in 1957 with a lunar motif.

The temple is also known as Niji no Kokedera, earning its nickname from the Unrei-tei garden, where moss and stones create a verdant tableau. This garden, along with Hashin-tei and Rogetsuan, illustrates the Zen principle of natural beauty and inner tranquility.

Located in Higashiyama-ku, Kyoto City, Komyoin Temple offers a retreat within the city. The temple grounds are open to visitors for meditation and self-reflection, standing as an important cultural site in the region and a symbol of Zen minimalist beauty.

The intricately designed gardens at Komyoin Temple embody harmony and balance, reflecting Zen principles. The Rogetsuan tea pavilion is a highlight, showcasing traditional Japanese aesthetics. Accessible throughout the year, the temple presents a changing display of natural beauty with each season.

Komyoin Temple remains a profound representation of Zen Buddhism’s role in Japanese culture. Its gardens demonstrate masterful landscape design and provide a peaceful refuge for reflection and nature appreciation.

Getting There the easiest way to reach Komyoin Temple

KH 35

 Keihan Main Line

 about 5 minute walk (500m)

Around Komyoin Temple

Komyoin Temple

Japanese Garden in Kyoto

open 8am - 5pm
closed Irregularly


光明院, 京都

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Updated 13 Mar 2024 • Report an error

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