Japan Buddhist Temples & Shinto Shrines: Listing
Japan Temples & Shrines
Japan has a wealth of religious architecture - Kyoto alone is estimated to have well over 2,000 temples and shrines. But it is not just in the large cities where the visitor will find Buddhist temples and Shinto shrines - nearly every village in Japan will have a local shrine or temple.
Most temples and shrines in Japan are free to enter but the more famous, historic temples will charge an admission fee for which you will receive entry and usally an explanatory leaflet in either Japanese or English.
Japanese temples usually close around 4pm or 5pm, though shrines often stay open around the clock.
Many temples and shrines in Japan are set in well-tended garden spaces and are often connected with local festivals and other events.
No visit to Japan would be complete without at least one visit to a Japanese temple or shrine.
Byodoin Temple - World Heritage Site - located in Uji south of Kyoto.
Chionin Temple - HQ of the Jodo sect of Japanese Buddhism.
Chishakuin Temple - famous for its lovely gardens.
Daigoji Temple - World Heritage Site - established in the east of Kyoto in 874.
Daikakuji Temple - Shingon "Temple of the Great Science" with lovely lakeside location.
Daitokuji Temple - large Rinzai Zen temple complex with 22 sub-temples.
Eikando Temple - located in Higashiyama and known for its autumn leaves.
Enkoji Temple - small, delightful temple and garden in eastern Kyoto.
Enryakuji Temple - large temple complex located on the summit of Mt. Hiei.
Entsuji Temple - famous for its garden's use of "borrowed scenery."
Ginkakuji Temple - World Heritage Site - aka the Silver Pavilion and previously a villa of the shogun Yoshimasa.
Honen-in Temple - small, atmospheric temple near Philosopher's Walk.
Honnoji Temple - city center temple where warlord Oda Nobunaga met his end.
Kenninji Temple - founded by Eisai in 1202 and the oldest Zen temple in Kyoto.
Kinkakuji Temple - World Heritage Site - the Golden Pavilion and a Kyoto icon.
Kiyomizu Temple - World Heritage Site - Kyoto's most popular temple especially with young people.
Kodaiji Temple - a nunnery established by Kitano Mandokoro (Nene), the widow of Toyotomi Hideyoshi.
Koryuji Temple - World Heritage Site - established in the memory of Prince Shotoku.
Kozanji Temple - World Heritage Site - contains Japan's oldest tea field.
Manpukuji Temple - founded by the Chinese priest Ingen and built in Ming style.
Manshuin Temple - Tendai-sect temple located in the Higashiyama district.
Myomanji Temple - peaceful temple with Indian-style pagoda.
Myoshinji Temple - large Zen temple with over 40 sub-temples.
Nanzenji Temple - Zen temple associated with vegetarian cuisine.
Ninnanji Temple - World Heritage Site - the "Temple of Benevolent Harmony."
Nishi & Higashi Honganji Temples - World Heritage Site - wealthy Jodo-Shinshu temples located near Kyoto Station.
Rozanji Temple - situated near the Imperial Palace and hosts a setsubun festival in February.
Ryoanji Temple - World Heritage Site - the world's most famous Zen stone garden.
Saihoji Temple - World Heritage Site - aka the "Moss Temple."
Sanjusangendo Temple - known for its 1,001 wooden statues of Kannon.
Sanzen-in Temple - in the village of Ohara in north east Kyoto is known for the splendor of its gardens.
Sekizanzenin Temple - tranquil mountainside temple near Shugakuin Rikyu.
Shisendo Hermitage - small Soto Zen sect temple in Higashiyama
Shokokuji Temple - Rinzai Zen temple near the Gosho and Doshisha University
Shoren-in Temple - Tendai sect temple famous for its gardens and giant camphor trees.
Tenryuji Temple - World Heritage Site - located in the Arashiyama district of western Kyoto.
Tofukuji Temple - one of the most important Zen temples in Kyoto.
Toji Temple - World Heritage Site - near Kyoto Station and known for its pagoda and monthly markets.
Tojiin Temple - pleasant temple near Ritsumeikan Kinugasa campus.
Fushimi Inari Shrine - known for its 1000s of torii gates.
Goryo Shrine - dedicated to the protection of the ancient capital.
Heian Shrine - Heian Shrine is a scaled-down reproduction of the original Imperial palace (Daigoku-den) built in 794.
Hirano Shrine - famous for its cherry blossoms in season.
Iwashimizu Hachiman-gu Shrine - is dedicated to Hachiman and has an interesting connection with Thomas Edison.
Kitano Tenmangu Shrine - is dedicated to Tenjin, the patron saint of students.
Nashinoki Shrine - small shrine on the north east side of Kyoto Imperial Palace famous for its fresh water spring.
Waratenjin - dedicated to safe child-birth.
Ryoanji Temple in western Kyoto is as iconic as Mt Fuji in Japan
Pagoda and Main Hall of Sensoji Temple, Asakusa, Tokyo
Yasukuni Shrine in Tokyo is a controversial shrine that enshrines Japan's war dead
Komyozenji Temple's front garden is a dry stone Zen garden, the rocks of which spell out the character for light
Kawasaki Temples & Shrines
Shimane Temples & Shrines
Yamaguchi Temples & Shrines
Okayama Temples & Shrines
Shimenawa sacred rope and stairs to Kitaoka Shrine in Kumamoto, Kumamoto Prefecture