My day in Arashiyama was jammed packed. My feet were sore and I was chilled from the consistent misty rain. As I walked towards the train station, the sun was setting and people were forming lines outside the restaurants of their choice. I checked the time as I passed my last stop before a very welcome and dry subway ride. I had time for one more.
Tenryu-ji Temple is located at the beginning of Arashiyama’s main strip and is one of the more popular temples to visit when in the area. Due to its location and beauty, this place gets busy fast and many stop there first. Personally, I think Tenryu-ji is a perfect way to end a long sightseeing day. The grounds are not large and there is plenty of seating to rest your feet and take in the view.
I didn’t take many photos from inside Tenryu-ji actual temple. No tripods allowed and low lightening made it difficult but truthfully, after seeing as many as I had, it didn’t feel overly special or different. I was ok with that. The real reason to visit is the garden itself, which has its own gate and fee. Upon entering you can certainly see why. You will feel a calm and awe when entering. The backdrop of autumn-colored mountains blends seamlessly with the curated garden.
I spent time sitting and thinking about the atmosphere while here. The mountains and mist working together to fight the last bit of sun for the day really made the Japanese maples pop against the gray of the sky. The rain was so soft it barely moved the water giving it a glass appearance. It was a perfect ending to one of my most favorite days since moving to Japan.
Location: Tenryu-ji temple can be found near both train lines (Arashiyama and Saga Arashiyama Sta.) and 3 major Bus lines (11,28,93).
Hours: 8:30 – 5:00(5:30 in winter)
Cost: ¥500 for the garden, another ¥300 for the buildings.
I have several more temples and recommendation for Solo travel in Kyoto.