A quiet temple, hidden away amongst traditional houses is surrounded by a picturesque garden.
Hokyo-in is a small temple of the Rinzai sect of Buddhism located in Arashiyama, Kyoto, opposite Seiryo-ji and, not too far from the very famous Bamboo Groves. Arashiyama has many famous places, but Hokyo-in is still only known to the locals and photography enthusiasts.
From the Shoin to the main hall, there is a strolling-style garden with white sand, green moss, maple trees, and seasonal flowers and trees. The garden is especially beautiful in the autumn when the leaves change color. As soon as you enter the garden, there is a spectacular view that everyone can admire. You can enjoy the beauty of autumn in every corner of the temple.
In the Heian period (794-1185), Emperor Shirakawa (1053-1129) built the temple and called it Zenri-ji. In the Nanbokucho period (794-1185) Zen Master Mokuan Shuyu rebuilt the temple as a temple of the Rinzai sect of Buddhism under the protection of Ashikaga Yoshiakira, the second shogun of the Muromachi shogunate.
When he died in 1367, Zennyu-ji became his family temple, and was renamed Hoko-in. In the Edo period (1603-1868), Hokyo-in Temple became a small temple of Tenryu-ji Temple. The temple was abandoned at the end of the Edo period, but was reconstructed after more than fifty years.
The current building was rebuilt after the Meiji era (1868-1912), and the main hall enshrines the eleven-faced thousand-armed Goddess of Mercy.
Hours : 9:00 to 16:00
Admission : 500 yen
Access : 15-minute walk from JR Saga Arashiyama Station