Top 5 Kyoto Temples to Escape the Crowds: Part 3
It's difficult to know where to start with this one. A quick look at my daily photoblog shows almost 80 images tagged "shinnyodo". It has kept me coming back year after year and has never disappointed, either as a place to find peace or to enjoy taking photos (admittedly one and the same for me).
Established in 984, Shinnyodo's premises encompass quite a large area with multiple buildings, including a three-storied pagoda. It is especially well-known for its magnificent Fall colours as evidenced by many of these photos, however I've found it to be worth visiting all year round. The green of the Spring maple is especially soothing.
As with the other temples so far named in this series, Shinnyodo remains quiet despite its central location due to lack of easy access. There is no bus stop close by, tour buses are unable to navigate the narrow streets and there isn't any parking to speak of.
That being said it isn't much of a walk from some of the busier spots such as Nanzenji (about 25 mins), and those prepared to make the walk are sure to find the experience worth while. Even the shot above, taken with the cherry blossoms in full bloom shows a remarkably quiet space.
As the temple sits atop a hill, late afternoon sunlight pours in making this an ideal place to spend golden hour.
The area behind the main hall can be particularly breathtaking at this time, especially in Fall.
The orange maple glow.
The three storey pagoda is surrounded by maple and ginko trees which catch the afternoon light.
Here, the trees cast shadows of the afternoon sun.
In September you can find a flower called higanbana sprouting up around the precincts. In English it's called Cluster Amaryllis and is usually found in graveyards and around the edges of rice fields. It's bright red colour is quite striking against the green grass.
In rainy season Hydrangeas take centre stage.
This image features the basin to purify your hands and mouth and the two hishyaku resting on the bamboo. My polarizing filter had steamed up giving the image this dreamy look. Again you can see that the temple is deserted.
To access Shinnyodo walk north from the Higashi Tenno-cho bus stop on Marutamachi or south from the Ginkakuji-michi stop on Kita-Shirakawa. Shinnyodo is on the east side of Yoshidayama to the east of Kyoto University Hyakumanben Campus.
Entrance is free except for the the inner chamber of the main hall and to access the temple's garden.
That about wraps things up for part 3. If this is your first visit and you found this content useful please head over to the main page and click that Like button.
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Until next time, happy shooting.