Light Show at the Shoren-In Temple

As we enter the month of March and are all looking forward to the Hanami season, various special events are taking place in Kyoto.  Among these, the evening light-ups are certainly the most popular ones.

The pond in the middle of the garden of the Shoren-In Temple is spectacular during the Light-up
Shoren-In is certainly not one of the main temples around, but it really is a very nice one and has undoubtedly one of the most beautiful Japanese gardens around.  The way this garden effectively utilizes its surrounding natural beauty is noteworthy.


This is not a mere lighting up of the garden, but it is an actual light show.  After visiting the interior of the temple (which is more a villa than a temple), one can view the beautiful circular pond-garden. The bamboo forest on the upper ground is another special sight, specially during the illumination.

The light show goes on in the garden in front of the main building of the Shoren-In Temple
The illuminated bamboo forest of the Shoren-In Temple is beautiful


At night, during the light show, the place appears to transform into a mysterious world—trees and flowers fading in the darkness, the five grand camphor trees (national natural monuments) majestically lit up, and a mandala of light, projected on the moss garden.


More than a temple, Shoren-In has the look of a villa.
Enjoying the light show while having a green tea at the Shoren-In Temple.



Shoren-In is located in the Southern Higashiyama area, right after the Chion-In Temple, north of Maruyama Koen Park (only 10 minutes on foot distance from the Yasaka shrine.)

You can easily find it  thanks to the obvious landmark — huge camphor trees right in front of the gate of the temple. These five trees in front and around the temple are truly spectacular and actual national natural monuments!

The huge Camphor tree in front of the  Shoren-In Temple entrance.

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