Kyoto's Golden Temple is beguiling and enigmatic

By Steve Leavett-Brown   Sep 6, 2012

Kinkakuji, more commonly known as the Golden Temple, is as beautiful as it is enigmatic. Originally constructed as a villa, so when you are strolling around its extensive grounds, there is a feel of a perfectly manicured country garden, rather than a place of enlightenment.

The Gold leaf veneer evokes an earlier time when Kyoto's wealthy and powerful lavished their patronage to higher and higher levels. Originally used in interior decoration to bring light and contrast to dark rooms, its use on the exterior gives the pavilion a beacon-like aura in the sunlight.

Japan Travel Member

Join the discussion

Tony Mariani 4 years ago
Beautiful photographs. This is considered the most famous temple in Japan. It has some history as it was destroyed and rebuilt. Still well worth the visit.
Grace Kwon 5 years ago
I was here last summer and it was beautiful! But looking at your photo of kinkakuji in the snow, I would love to visit again in the winter. Looks amazing :)
Ashley Haley 5 years ago
Your choice of main photo for this article is really great. What would Kinkakuji be without a group of touring students? Love it!