Local map

Places of interest in the vicinity

Ryogen-in, a sub-temple of Daitoku-ji

Ryogen-in, the head temple of the South School of Rinzai-shu Daitoku-ji sect, has four of good Karesansui (dry landscape) gardens. The most interesting would be Ryogin-tei, a moss covered Karesansui that was laid out in early 16th century. Other three including Isshidan (photo right) are relatively new but also interesting.

Hojo building, Genkan (the entrance) and Omote-mon gate were built with typical Zen style at about the same time the temple was founded.


Ryogen-in was founded in 1502 by Hatakeyama Yoshimoto, the lord of Noto Province (present day Ishikawa Prefecture) together with some others including Otomo Yoshinaga of Bungo Province (today's Oita Prefecture). Priest Tokei Soboku of Daitoku-ji was assigned as the founder.

How to get to Ryogen-in

37 minutes from Kyoto Station to Daitoku-ji-mae by Kyoto City Bus 206, then 3 minutes on foot.

Hours and Admission

Closed when Buddhist memorial services are held.

All except following: 350 yen
High school students: 250 yen
Junior high school students (7th - 9th graders) and younger: 200 yen


Click on a photo for full image.

Omote-mon Ishidoro and a stone pavement Koda-tei garden
Omote-mon (the front gate). An important cultural property that was built in the early 16th century.
October 25, 2008
Ishidoro (a stone lantern) and a stone pavement that reaches the Genkan (Kara-mon).
October 25, 2008
Narrow Koda-tei garden in front of Shoin room.
October 25, 2008
Un-no-ishi Karesansui garden called Isshidan Genkan, an important cultural property
"Un-no-ishi" stone in Koda-tei. This used to be a foundation stone of Jurakutei, a castle like mansion of Toyotomi Hideyoshi.
October 25, 2008
Karesansui (dry landscape) garden called Isshidan that is in front of Hojo building.
October 25, 2008
Genkan, an important cultural property, and Kame-jima (turtle island) in Isshidan garden.
October 25, 2008
Horai-san Tsuru-jima The central room of Hojo
Two stones on the right are likened to Horai-san that is believed to be a mountain where spiritually awakened people live.
October 25, 2008
Tsuru-jima (crane island) in Isshidan garden.
October 25, 2008
The central room of Hojo and the main Buddhist image. Hojo, an important cultural property, was built around the year 1517.
October 25, 2008
Kaiso-do, the hall of the founder Ishidoro in front of Kaiso-do Karesansui garden called Ryugin-tei
Kaiso-do, the hall of the founder.
October 25, 2008
Ishidoro in front of Kaiso-do.
October 25, 2008
Karesansui garden called Ryugin-tei that is a backyard of Hojo building. It is said that Soami made this garden at the same time Hojo was built.
October 25, 2008
The tallest stone in the middle of Ryugin-tei is called Shumisen-seki. Shumisen is a imaginary mountain that stands in the center of the Buddhist world. A round stone in front of it is called Yohai-seki.
October 25, 2008
Totekiko, that is said to be the smallest Karesansui garden in Japan. This was laid out by NABESHIMAGakusho in 1958.
October 25, 2008
A well called Tansetsusei.
October 25, 2008