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Ryoanji Temple

#24 of 1,000 things to do in Kyoto
Certificate of Excellence
Neighbourhood:
Northern Kyoto
As featured in 3 Days in Kyoto and 3 other guides
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Address: 13 Ryoanji Goryonoshitacho, Kyoto 616-8001, Kyoto Prefecture
Name/address in local language
Phone Number:
+81 75-463-2216
Website
Today
08:30 - 16:30
Closed now
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Hours:
Sun - Sat 08:30 - 16:30
Book In Advance
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USD 681.65*
and up
Private Full Day Kyoto Streets Tour with a Photographer
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USD 58.25*
and up
Kyoto Morning Tour: Kyoto Imperial Palace, Golden Pavilion, Nijo Castle
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USD 121.34*
and up
Private Custom Tour: Kyoto in One Day

TripAdvisor Reviewer Highlights

Read all 1,753 reviews
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  • 380
    Excellent
  • 285
    Very good
  • 114
    Average
  • 34
    Poor
  • 12
    Terrible
Tranquil rock garden

We walked here from Kinkaku-ji temple, about 20 minutes along a main road. I wouldn't have made the trip especially, but so glad we did visit given we were in the area. It's not... read more

4 of 5 bubblesReviewed 2 weeks ago
LicoriceLover
,
Perth, Australia
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1,753 Reviews from our TripAdvisor Community

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Showing 825: English reviews
Salem, Oregon
Level Contributor
10 reviews
9 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 3 helpful votes
3 of 5 bubbles Reviewed 2 days ago NEW

Not a bad "in-between" destination when traveling from Arashiyama and Kinkakuji Temple. I can attest that I could not see all of the stones from any single vantage (in the plane of the garden).

Helpful?
Thank judyer104
Edmonton, Canada
Level Contributor
40 reviews
22 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 3 helpful votes
5 of 5 bubbles Reviewed 3 days ago NEW via mobile

Makes one realize the wisdom of the theme "making the most of what one has." Here, the materials for the garden may not have been the most wonderful but the finished "product" is truly special. Walking through the entire gardens and wallis pretty special and noting the many lawyers of wood on the roofs makes one appreciate the artisanship.

Helpful?
Thank hu-go-young
Ilkley, United Kingdom
Level Contributor
76 reviews
18 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 35 helpful votes
3 of 5 bubbles Reviewed 3 days ago NEW via mobile

You go for the rock garden, which is nice but not going to keep you occupied for more than 5 minutes. Gardens are nice but there are better. Combine with Kinkakuji, but get the bus between them as the walk is longer than it looks.

Helpful?
Thank David G
Level Contributor
3 reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 3 helpful votes
3 of 5 bubbles Reviewed 1 week ago

It was difficult to appreciate the beauty and significance of Ryoanji because of the crowd of people packed into the space and the tour guides imploring visitors to move along. I encourage visitors to try and avoid peak visiting times in order to fully appreciate the experience.

Helpful?
Thank Susan B P
New York
Level Contributor
53 reviews
9 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 29 helpful votes
2 of 5 bubbles Reviewed 1 week ago

We felt that this was an over rated site. The surrounding gardens were nicer than the rock garden itself, which did not feel spiritual or contemplative to us.

Helpful?
Thank jasper25rocks
Perth, Australia
Level Contributor
83 reviews
40 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 38 helpful votes
4 of 5 bubbles Reviewed 2 weeks ago

We walked here from Kinkaku-ji temple, about 20 minutes along a main road. I wouldn't have made the trip especially, but so glad we did visit given we were in the area. It's not as easy to get to as soon sights in Kyoto, especially with time a factor, so we got taxi to Kinkaku-ji, walked to Ryoanji temple, then... More 

Helpful?
Thank LicoriceLover
Level Contributor
103 reviews
62 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 7 helpful votes
4 of 5 bubbles Reviewed 2 weeks ago

The main attraction is the beautiful and cozy garden with the 15 rocks neatly laid out within all precint. If you just walk, think, reflect anything from inside out, you could feel the enlightenment of Zen Satori.

Helpful?
Thank Jorge Luis H
Mexico City, Mexico
Level Contributor
40 reviews
15 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 9 helpful votes
1 of 5 bubbles Reviewed 2 weeks ago via mobile

With so many things to visit, see, eat, walk... I don't recommend this one. Small place with not a lot to see. It takes a while to get there and you definitely could use that time to go somewhere else. Look at the pictures, there is really nothing more to see.

Helpful?
Thank Marsha M
Mississauga, Ontario, Canada
Level Contributor
119 reviews
65 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 78 helpful votes
4 of 5 bubbles Reviewed 2 weeks ago via mobile

This was a peaceful, leisurely walk. It wasn't a "must see" place, in my opinion, but it you have the time and you're in the vicinity, it's worth checking out. There are so many incredible temples in Kyoto that the competition to be in the top ten is pretty fierce. There is a restaurant on the premises that serves yu-dofu... More 

Helpful?
Thank Kiara S
Brisbane, Australia
Level Contributor
98 reviews
23 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 35 helpful votes
4 of 5 bubbles Reviewed 3 weeks ago

We would not have visited this Temple but for the proprietor of a wine bar in Kyoto recommending this temple to us. In a day of temple and shrine viewing, I enjoyed this the most due to it being so unique. It is easy to access on the 12 or 59 bus.

Helpful?
Thank Quazoosle

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Staying in Northern Kyoto

Neighbourhood Profile
Northern Kyoto
Hot springs and historic temples characterize the leafy landscapes of Northern Kyoto. Acres of tranquil residential streets are interrupted by some of Kyoto's most gorgeous architectural gems, including the majestic Golden Pavilion of Kinkakuji, the serene artistry of the Ryoanji Temple rock gardens, and the bold red paint across the structures of Enryakuji Temple. Once a religious core of the city, the district now boasts some of its most remote and peaceful hot springs, as well as a few of its best family-run mom-and-pop restaurants. A blend of extremely local at its outskirts, and highly peopled at its tourist centers, Northern Kyoto nonetheless retains a halcyon air in harmony with nature.
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