Please check out the Daitoku Temple・Genko-an・Kamigamo Shrine area map while reading this.
If you look north from the Murasakino Wakuden desiged area of Murasakino Kitaoji Street to Kishi Kazuro, you will see a parking lot and gate.
Of the subtemples associated with Daitoku Temple, the only ones that allow regular admission are Ryugen Temple, Zuiho Temple, Daisen Temple and Takagiri Temple. A few times a year, there is a "special admission to private cultural property" events that allow the general public into normally closed temples. It may be best to seek these days out in advance and aim to visit then.
Daitoku Temple from the air
Ryugen Temple In front of the Hojo
Perhaps one of the most famous dry landscape gardens found in textbooks is that of Daisen Temple.
Photographs are prohibited so its unfortunate that there are no pictures to be seen. During the Autumn Foliage season Takakiri Temple is also recommended.
To the west of Daitoku Temple is Murasakino High School, which became famous because of the writer Wataya Risa. To the north is Imamiya Shrine, which is famous for the Yasuriya Hana-ya, which is a famous festival dance. Here, you can also purchase Tamanokoshi here, which are amulets that are supposed to marry someone into wealth!
Also, the area in front of the shrine that has the Aburimochi (rice cake) shop is often used for period movies - highly recommended!
The path that leads from Imamiya Shrine to Genko-an is uphill and theres not much to be seen, so it might be best fo take a taxt from Kitaoji Street. On the way is the Matsuno Soy Sauce shop which is a very unique shop to stop by.
Also, it is on the backside of this street that Aman Resports is building their Kyoto location.
Window of Englightenment
Genko-an・Koetsu Temple・Joshoji Temples are located in an area that is generally called Takagamine. Genko Temple is famous for its unique front gate, and for a circular window called the Window of Englightenment and a square window which is called the Window of Hesitation.
Located here are the bloody ceiling boards from Fushimi Castle (cause by the suicide of Torii Mototada.)
In front of Genko-an is Koetsu Temple. This is the area where Tokugawa Ieyasu gathered artists and craftsmans in order to build a utopia of art.
The present Koetsu Temple were dwellings at the time of Tokugawa.
Because it is located on a slope, you can see down the mountain and up into the sky. With the maples and bush clovers all around, this area is splended during the Autumn Foliage season.
Gate donated by Yoshino Dayu
If you turn right after leaving Koetsu Temple and go along the road, you will come to Josho Temple.
There is a parking lot located here, so for those who are coming by car, it is possible to park here then visit other temples such as Genko-an and Koetsu Temple. Josho Temple is also famous for housing the grave of Yoshino Dayu as well.
The path from Takagamine to Shoden Temple is quite far so feel free to take a taxi!
Shoden Temple is the work of Kobori Enshu, and is very famous for the garden.
Similar to Entsu Temple, Mt. Hiei is a backdrop to these locations. Also similar to Genko-an, the bloody ceiling boards from Fushimi Castle are used here.
Through the grounds of Kamigamo Shrine is the beautiful Myojin River. It is very pleasant and leaves you with a sense of cleanliness.
Outside of the shrine, along the river are the priests houses (Sha-ke). Gorgeous area.
→ Nishimura Family Villa
Detour: Located next to Kamigamo Shrine is the famous Jinba-do. The famous Aburimochi shop is located at Imamiya Shrine.
Around this area are some famous Soba shops (Kanei) and cafes as well.
Distance: 7km Time: Approx. 4 hours
Transportation: Kyoto City Bus No. 1, 59, 92, 204, 205, 206 - Daitokuji-mae stop.
From Murasakino Daitoku Temple to Takagamine, Kamigamo Temple walking trail map
Daitoku Temple Takagamine area hotel map