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Gio-ji Temple, Kyoto

4.4
#32 of 696 in Historic Sites in Kyoto
Religious Site · Hidden Gem · Tourist Spot
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Stop at Gio-ji Temple to observe a rich, evocative fairytale landscape of moss and trees, hiding a modest but picturesque thatched temple. The temple takes its name from a dancer named Gio, who began a doomed relationship with the Heike Clan's leader, Taira-no-Kiyomori. When it ended, Gio retreated here to spend the rest of her life as a Buddhist priestess. Observe carved wooden statues of her, other spurned lovers, and the clan leader himself dotted around the small temple, and look out for the statue of Dainichi Nyorai, the Buddha of Light, found inside the temple. A worthy visit in autumn, the red tones of the leaves contrast beautifully against the lush green mossy ground at this time. Bring along your camera to capture the dream-like beauty of this spot in the woods. Use our Kyoto tour planner to visit Gio-ji Temple on your trip to Kyoto, and learn what else travelers and our writers recommend seeing nearby.
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Gio-ji Temple reviews

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TripAdvisor traveler rating
TripAdvisor traveler rating 4.5
409 reviews
Google
4.4
TripAdvisor
  • About 15-20min from the Bamboo walk, so its a bit secluded. Its beautiful and calm compared to the more touristy areas nearby. So a nice place to visit for not much time investment. 
    About 15-20min from the Bamboo walk, so its a bit secluded. Its beautiful and calm compared to the more touristy areas nearby. So a nice place to visit for not much time investment.  more »
  • There are so many temples in Kyoto to view and one has to be selective especially if you have to pay an admission fee. We elected to visit the Gio-ji temple and we were not disappointed. This is... 
    There are so many temples in Kyoto to view and one has to be selective especially if you have to pay an admission fee. We elected to visit the Gio-ji temple and we were not disappointed. This is...  more »
Google
  • Amazing and fun mossy green space. Very tiny, but worth a visit.
  • Beautiful little temple with nicely kept moss garden, somewhat off the beaten path but still worth a visit.

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