Ginkaku-ji Temple (Silver Pavilion)
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Ginkaku-ji Temple (Silver Pavilion)
Ginkaku-ji Temple (Silver Pavilion)

Ginkaku-ji Temple (Silver Pavilion)

8:30am - 5pm Mar - Nov and 9am-4:30pm Dec - Feb
2 Ginkakujicho, Sakyo Ward, Kyoto, Kyoto Prefecture

The basics

While the temple interiors are closed to the public, a walking tour of the Ginkaku-ji Temple affords views of its tree-lined gardens. Follow the circular route around the ‘Sea of Silver Garden’, a manicured sand garden featuring a sand dome representation of Mt. Fuji (the ‘Moon Viewing Platform’); past moss gardens, ponds, and islands; up to a hilltop viewpoint looking down over the Silver Pavilion.

Although it’s possible to visit independently, exploring with a guide offers insight into the temple’s fascinating history and unique architecture, inspired by Japanese wabi-sabi principles.

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Things to know before you go

  • Ginkaku-ji Temple is one of Kyoto’s most visited attractions and a must for history buffs and first-time visitors.
  • There is an admission fee to visit the temple grounds.
  • The temple and gardens are accessible for wheelchairs and strollers.
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How to get there

Ginkaku-ji Temple is located around three miles (4.5 kilometers) northwest of downtown Kyoto. Buses #5, #7, and #100 run from Kyoto Station to the temple in about 35 minutes. Hikers can follow the scenic trail known as the Philosopher’s Path between Nanzen-ji Temple and Ginkaku-ji Temple—a roughly 30-45 minute walk.

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Trip ideas

When to get there

The temple is open daily, although opening times vary throughout the year. The temple can get extremely busy, especially in peak season. Avoid the crowds by arriving at opening, or late in the afternoon, and opt for a weekday visit if possible. Some of the most stunning views are during the autumn, when the colorful foliage provides an atmospheric backdrop for photos.

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Frequently Asked Questions
The answers provided below are based on answers previously given by the tour provider to customers’ questions.
What are the nearest attractions to Ginkaku-ji Temple (Silver Pavilion)?
What else should I know about attractions in Kyoto?
As well as visiting the Ginkaku-ji Temple (Silver Pavilion), check out these trip ideas to make the most of your visit: