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Ryoanji Temple and Rock Garden


Higashi-Honganji Temple | Kinkankuji (Golden Pavillion) | Ryoanji Temple and Rock Garden | Kiyomizu Temple | Himeiji

This rock garden, which is on UNESCO's list of World Heritage Sites, was according to the brochure, "said to have been laid out by Soami, a painter and gardener who died in 1525."

The brochure also advised that "the longer you gaze at it, the more varied your imagination becomes." I concluded that I must not have looked at it long enough because when we left, it still looked like a bunch (15 to be exact) of rocks to me.

rock garden

The rock garden.

in case of fire...

As I learn more about the history of Japan, it seems to me they have had trouble keeping things like temples, shrines and Tokyo from burning down. I guess their history of destructive fires has prompted certain preventative measures.


Contrary to the image that "rock garden" creates in my mind, the surrounding area was filled with beauty.

new year decor

This is an example of a typical new year decoration. The white pieces of paper, somewhat shaped like lightening bolts are to scare away evil spirits.