For other temples by similar names, see Zenrin-ji.
Eikan-dō Zenrin-ji (永観堂禅林寺) is the head temple for the Seizan branch of Japan's Jōdo-shū (Pure Land) Buddhist sect, located in Kyoto, Sakyō-ku. It was founded by Shinshō, a pupil of Kūkai, and is famous for its fall foliage and for its prominence in the past as a center of learning.
Thomas Chen | Nov 26, 2017
This was one of the top three shrines/temples that I visited in Kyoto (I visited about a dozen or more). During the fall the foliage here is amazing, very picturesque for the photo-inclined. Moderately crowded. It has the best dessert place inside a temple that I've visited (the chairs are adorned with a red-colored cloth and 5-6 kinds of traditional sweets are offered along with tea. A great setting to enjoy them in!
Christopher Chang | Nov 5, 2017
Really great spot. As everyone says there are ample photo chances. The area itself is very large and there is a wonderful view of Kyoto. It's not super crowded so that's good. Getting there is pretty easy as well it's about 10 minutes from the subway. Fees are low and overall a relaxing experience.
Scott Shepherd | Nov 2, 2017
The best temple in Kyoto, hands down. Not too busy, stunning scenery and real-life ceremonies that are amazing to behold. Entrance fees are ¥600 for adults but the money is really well spent. The No 5 bus runs very close by and takes you straight into Kyoto City Centre
Azra Lau | Nov 19, 2017
Went by the entrance to ask for directions during the night visit time, and got yelled at by the staff (at parking lot helping people get in line) for holding a yam in my hand. I immediately put it in my pocket (no signs I can see that u can't even hold food). He then repeated few time loudly to ask if I understand, and threaten to kick me out if I take it out again. My Japanese is good enough to know that what is said was meant to insult. I had a great time in Kyoto so far but it only take one incident to ruin the good impression of the city ( especially from a temple staff).
Jack Poon | Oct 26, 2017
Very nice place with lots of photo opportunities. Moderate crowd with plenty of time to check out various sites. The leaves start turning red in late October. Within 2 weeks, I bet this place is going to be beautiful!
Magdalena Fraga | Mar 31, 2018
Temple is beautiful and relaxing. I've been here twice and I am planing to go back next time I visit Kyoto! It is a working religious facility so you cannot take pictures of the beautiful painted pillars, gold decorations, and dragon-like stairs. The staff is very friendly and kind. Make sure to visit the Pagoda with a view of Kyoto! They have bike parking, lockers, and red stamps which you will easily find!
Haniff Insahn | Apr 2, 2018
Lovely place. We visited this temple for the Autumn night illumination. The price is ¥600 per person. If you took the subway, it'll take about 20 minutes walk. The path towards the temple is very dark at night so just follow the crowd. Leave your tripods at the hotel as you won't be allowed to use it in the temple vicinity.
Federico Iaccarino | Mar 28, 2018
Great temple, deserves a visit. You can climb to the Pagoda or admire very famous paintings, such as the "Tigers fighting in the bamboo forest". Unfortunately you are not allowed to take pictures of the paintings
Toni Lauren | Mar 11, 2018
Spring time, before April, this temple looked absolutely beautiful. Rooms included many paintings with English background info and statues and relics also had English infos. This place closed at 5pm but last customers were taken in at 4pm. I recommend coming here just few hours before sunset so the light will make this place even more peaceful.
M. Blablub | Jun 28, 2018
Better than Golden and Silver Pavilion combined. No crowds. Very quiet and relaxing atmosphere with a beautiful garden and an impressive temple. Do not miss that.
joshua manzo | Jul 5, 2018
I had a legitimate spiritual experience at this temple. It's active with monks walking through the complex and later on I was able to catch them chanting which created an amazing ambiance. The people were friendly and I chatted a bit with the lady in the gift shop and if you're one to purchase souvenirs, then this is a good place to do it. She even gave me a little bonus gift which goes to show the type of goodwill I experienced. There is a cemetery which was interesting to walk around. One part of the complex you can walk through some structures with a complementary cup of green tea and this has a small zen-style garden surrounding it. Make sure not to miss the pagoda at the top of the premises which will give you a fantastic snapshot of Kyoto. Also, make sure not to miss the main temple with the Buddha who is looking back. I was really pleased that I put this place on my itinerary.
Boon Chuan | Jul 16, 2018
Eikando is very famous for its autumn colors and the evening illuminations that take place in fall. Located just north of the large temple complex of Nanzenji. Amazing colour of autumn foliage can be viewed here.
Joey Han | Jul 1, 2018
I dare say this is the best temple complex in Kyoto. Entrance fee is 600¥, but it is extremely worth the price. If you happen to be in the Higashiyama area and with limited time, go for this temple. It is rather secluded since it is at the foot of the mountain but the Raku Bus 100 gets you there fast. There are hardly any tourists so you can really take in the beauty of this place. Besides the main halls, there is also a beautiful open garden which I'm sure looks even better in the autumn. The pagoda overlooks the city and offers a peaceful and stunning view on a clear day. There is a hut for shade as well. The temple is well known for its Mikaeri Amida, also known as the Buddha Looking Back. There is a legend behind the statue so I highly encourage you to check it for yourself. For those interested in getting a little memento there is a mini souvenir shop with postcards, incense, bracelets and charms. It is unlike the other temple shops which feel very commercialised. Last entry is at 4pm but the temple closes at 5.
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