Kinkaku-ji

May 2019 | 1 Kinkakujicho, Kita Ward, Kyoto, 603-8361, Japan | shokoku-ji.jp/en/kinkakuji/

Maybe the most famous Zen temple in Kyoto, officially named Rokuon-ji, is a UNESCO World Heritage site. Originally built in the Kamakura period (12-14th century) as an aristocrat’s country estate, it got turned into a Zen temple in 1422. Kinkaku-ji is the Golden Pavilion, named for the two upper floors that are entirely covered in gold leaf. It has burned down numerous times – not unlikely as the many other historic buildings in Japan. It got destroyed twice during the Onin War, a civil war that destroyed much of Kyoto and more recently in 1950 when a fanatic monk set on fire and the building seen now was rebuilt 5 years later.

This is an amazing place, a beautiful garden and the pavilion itself is very impressive. Kyoto is visited by lots of tourist, and some places tend to be very busy, but this was the most crowded site we went to – not a surprise, but at other places I didn’t feel the thickness of people that much. As you can see on one of the pictures, across the pond from the pavilion, people cluster for the perfect postcard photo – it is easy-peasy to find a good viewpoint for that.

Fujifilm X-T10, Fujifilm XC 16-50mm f3.5-5.6, FujifilmXC 50-230mm f4.5-6.7, no tripod