Temple Lodging in Japan

Chion-in Wajun-Kaikan
TEL 075-541-5141 without meals 6,100 yen or more
including breakfast 7,600 yen or more
including 2 meals 11,700 yen or more
Access "JR Kyoto station" > (bus) > "Chion-in-mae bus stop" > 6 minutes walk
Parking There is a parking lot
Time Check-in 15:00 Check-out 10:00
Room 47 guest room

Chion-in is the head temple of Jodo-shu and is famous for the world's largest wooden gate, the umbrella left by Jingoro Hidari and the nightingale corridor.

At the shukubo, the morning service was more impressive than anything else. In the Amida-do hall, we welcomed the priests while hitting temple blocks and then chanted "Namuamidabutsu," which is followed by the service in Mikage-do hall, a national treasure. We sat down in the interior, which is usually off-limits, and offered incense. A textbook of sutra was handed to each guest and we chanted the sutra together. In the service, the names of the shukubo guests were announced one by one and a prayer was given for each of us and our ancestors. I had a stronger feeling of participation in the service of Chion-in than at any other temple. On a rainy or snowy day, it is possible to go to Chion-in temple from the shukubo through an underground passage. It is like a secret hidden passage. It depends on the weather, but if you are lucky, you may be able to use this passage.

The shukubo itself is a modern reinforced concrete building. Other than the priests at the reception, it looks like a Japanese style inn. (When I was taking a bath, a priest came in to share the bath.) The room consists of two six tatami mat rooms. The room was equipped with a TV set, air conditioning and a safe. A towel, a toothbrush and a yukata robe were also provided. The curfew is eleven at night.

Depending on the room, you will be able to see the sanmon gate (a national treasure), which is the world's largest wooden gate, at a close distance. The room I stayed in faces the inner garden and so I could not see the gate. If you are interested, you should ask when you make a reservation. You can eat meals at Kacho (open from 7:00 to 22:00), a Kyoto cuisine restaurant on the underground floor, although it is a little expensive. As there are many places to eat near the temple, you do not have to worry. Although I was traveling alone, I was welcomed.


Chion-in, Syoren-in, Yasaka-jinzya, Gion, Maruyama-Park

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