A temple rebuilt by the mother of the 5th shogun, Tsunayoshi Tokugawa
Built in 1029 only to be often burned down in war, it was rebuilt by Keishoin, the mother of the 5th shogun, Tsunayoshi Tokugawa. Located halfway up a mountain, the temple grounds measure 10 hectares and are blessed with seasonal flowers such as cherry blossoms, hydrangeas, Japanese anemone and the fall leaves which color the seasons. Discover the “Gliding Dragon” pine tree, a 600-year-old Natural Monument whose trunk measures 37 meters and stretches out on its side. The temple is one of the sacred places on the Saigoku Kannon Pilgrimage of 33 temples in Japan. It is also known for the presence of the jizo statue of happiness in the temple grounds which prays for the happiness of other people.
In the pond garden that takes about 40 minutes to walk around once with the huge 300-year-old weeping cherry trees as a must-see, temple buildings dot the surroundings and as you tour the temple, you can enjoy the most panoramic view of Kyoto and the flora of the four seasons. In April, there are huge weeping cherry trees that are more than 300 years old and were supposedly planted by Keishoin. The 500 trees represent various kinds of cherry which blossom profusely, and the grounds are colored in pink. In the June and July of summer, 10,000 hydrangeas cover the entire slope, and from the high ground, the view of Kyoto beyond the hydrangeas is overwhelming. In November, the grounds as well as the entire mountain are painted in the fall colors and you can enjoy the scenery at Yoshimine-dera. The harmony between the temple buildings that dot the pond garden and the fall leaves is beautiful no matter where you view it. You can get a leisurely taste of the grand landscape which differs from that of temples in the city.