Shokokuji Temple group has famous Tatchu temples (sub-temples which are built to commemorate a high ranking preacher’s death) such as Kinkakuji Temple and Ginkakuji Temple. However, despite its importance, not many tourists visit Shokokuji Temple.
It is true that Shokokuji Temple itself is not gorgeous compared to Kinkakuji Temple, which is sometimes called the Golden Pavilion. However, Shokokuji Temple is historically as valuable as Kinkakuji Temple. In fact, Shokokuji and Kinkakuji were built by the same person, the third Ashikaga General, Yoshimitsu. Also Shokokuji is ranked as the second most important Zen temple in Kyoto among the Kyoto Gozan (the five most important Zen temples in Kyoto). In addition, a Hatto building (preaching hall) which was re-built in 1605 in Shokokuji, is the oldest building of its kind.
As the title suggests, the Shokokuji Temple is going to be even greater spot during autumn. That’s because this temple opens the special historical objects to the public (paid) for a certain period of time. More specifically, Shokokuji opens the Kaizando building and its garden, the Hatto building and the bathroom called Senmyo. The bathroom in Zen is an important place where people wash their physical and mental scum away. And the name Senmyo is applicable only to the Imperial family and General family. As explained before, since the Shokokuji is built by Yoshimitsu Ashikaga, the bathroom here is officially called the Senmyo.
The nearest station: Imadegawa (Subway Karasuma)
Period: September 25th – December 15th
Price: 800 yen/adult, 700 yen/over 65 y.o, mid and high school student, 400 yen/elm student
Open Hours: 10:00 – 16:30 (Last Entry 16:00)
Closed on: October 8th, 9th, 18th, 19th, 20th, 21st.