Kurama-dera temple is said to be founded when Gantei Shonin, the disciple of Ganjin Wajo, began worshipping the Buddhist god Bishamonten. Kurama-dera serves as the guardian of the northern part of Kyoto, the sacred land for mountain training and a renowned spot during autumn leaves season. It is here that you can enjoy the beautiful fall colors of the mountains from the precincts.
Emperors, aristocrats, and many female literary scholars have been visiting the Ryozen and Kurama-dera since the Heian period. It is widely mentioned in literary works of that time, such as the Pillow Book , the Sarashina Nikki, and even the Tales of Genji, as a meeting place.
The three Sonten, or spirits, of the moon, sun, and earth are enshrined at this temple. In front of the main hall “Honden Kondo,” there is a special Buddhist seal called the Kongosho at the center of a patterned, stone tiled floor. It is said that if you stand on the Kongosho with both of your hands and eyes towards the heavens, you will become one with the universe and have a wish granted. It is indeed an astonishing spiritual spot.
Here, you will not be greeted by the Komainu, but by the guardian guard Komatora, as he was a servant of the buddhist deity Bishamonten. Since it will be a steep climb to the main hall, you should use the cable car for part of the way and save your strength for the top.
1074, Kurama Hommachi, Sakyo-ku Kyoto-shi, Kyoto, Japan
Aizan Fee 300 yen
Eizan Railway "Kurama" station, 5 mins walk to Niomon gate
Kyoto bus, get off at "Kurama," 3 minutes on foot to Niomon gate
※ 30 minutes on foot or 2 minutes on cable car (200 yen for cable car), when using cable car 10 minutes on foot from Niomon gate
※The written notice and information on this page are as of the date of publication. Please refer or confirm the latest information of each spot on individual introduced website.