Highlights and access methods of Kiyomizu-dera Temple (Kyoto Prefecture)

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Kiyomizudera is a temple located in the Higashiyama district of Kyoto, officially known as Otowasan Kiyomizudera. It is believed to have been founded by Kukai, also known as Kobo-Daishi, and was registered as a UNESCO World Heritage Site in 1994. In particular, the wooden stage of the main hall, known as the 'Stage of Kiyomizu,' juts out over a cliff, offering a sweeping view of the city of Kyoto below. At 'Otowa Waterfall,' it is said that one's wish will come true if they scoop water from one of the three streams.

In this article, we will explain the attractions of Kiyomizu-dera Temple in Kyoto Prefecture and how to access it for those who are traveling to Japan from overseas.

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(Prefecture : Kyoto , Category : Temples)

Highlights of Kiyomizu-dera

Kiyomizu Temple in Kyoto is one of the most famous and historic temples in Japan and a must-see for international visitors. Founded in 778 during the early Heian period (794-1192), it is part of the cultural heritage of the ancient capital of Kyoto and a UNESCO World Heritage Site.

Kiyomizu-dera Temple is famous for its wooden "Kiyomizu-no-butai" (stage of Kiyomizu), which juts out from the main hall. The stage is about 12 meters high, from which one can enjoy a panoramic view of the city of Kyoto. The pillars of the Kiyomizu stage are built without using a single nail.

At Otowa Falls, located below the main hall, visitors drink from three different streams flowing from the falls using cups with long handles. From right to left as seen from the front, they are said to "longevity" "fulfillment in love" and "achieve academic success". Choose one of them and drink from it.

Kiyomizu-dera is beautiful throughout the year but is particularly popular during the cherry blossom season in spring and the autumn leaf season. The temple often hosts special night viewings during these periods, illuminating the buildings and trees to create a magical atmosphere that shouldn't be missed.

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Address and access method of Kiyomizu-dera Temple

The address of Kiyomizu Temple is "1-294 Kiyomizu, Higashiyama Ward, Kyoto City, Kyoto Prefecture". The nearest station is Keihan Electric Railway Kiyomizu Gojo Station. It takes about 25 minutes on foot from the station. Alternatively, change to the Kyoto City Bus from JR Kyoto Station and get off at Gojozaka. It's about a 10 minute walk from the bus stop.

Attractions near Kiyomizu-dera Temple

Several notable attractions are located near Kiyomizu-dera Temple.

Yasaka Shrine
This is one of the most famous shrines in Kyoto and is known for its vibrant Gion Matsuri festival in July. The shrine complex is large and features several buildings, including gates, a main hall, and a stage.

Kodai-ji Temple
This temple is renowned for its beautiful Zen garden and exquisite interiors. It was established in 1606 in memory of Toyotomi Hideyoshi, one of Japan's greatest historical figures.

Gion District
Known as Kyoto's most famous geisha district, Gion is filled with shops, restaurants, and teahouses, where Geiko (Kyoto dialect for geisha) and Maiko (geiko apprentices) entertain.

Sannenzaka and Ninen-zaka
These two preserved streets in Kyoto offer a glimpse into the city's past with their traditional wooden buildings, tea houses, and shops. They are also known for their charming atmosphere and photogenic surroundings.

Other information about Kiyomizu-dera Temple

Official site about Kiyomizu-dera Temple :


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( Written by Tatsuo Ikura )