Kinkakuji Temple

1 (10) 2 (9)Points of View 
(1) The Pavilion Reflected on the Pond 
(2) The Deep Forest around the Pavilion 
(3) The Moss Above the Pavilion


This temple is quite famous for its golden pavilion. The artificial-looking structure is covered with gold leaf, which strongly contrasts with the surrounding nature and shows off the natural elements. Now, let’s take a look at how the pavilion stands in contrast with the surrounding nature.

After passing through the gate, you see the straight approach ahead to the ticket booth. After buying a ticket and entering the site, you see the golden pavilion over the big pond. The building has three stories, and the upper two are covered with gold leaf (except for the roof section). Gazing at the pavilion for a while, it seems to me as if it floats on the pond because the lower story is not covered with gold. On a sunny day, the building is clearly reflected on the pond’s surface, thus enhancing the presence of the pond.

Many trees are planted around the building and the pond, and their deep green contrasts with the gold of the building. A number of pine trees are planted nearby, and in winter the tips of these trees change from green to yellow. It seems as if the phoenix on top of the roof was about to flap away and poured gold onto the pines.

Leaving the pavilion and the pond, visitors progress up the slope. Moss covers the ground, and pine trees grow on both sides of the slope. The trees change from green in spring through autumn to yellow in winter.

After walking up the slope for a while, you reach an elevated spot where you can see the pavilion over the moss and pine trees. As the sun sets in the west, the surface of the moss shines gold like the pavilion.

Many pine trees grow in the precinct, and the surface on both sides of the slope is covered with moss Many kinds of potential gold exist here:. The tips of the winter pines and the moss reflecting the western sunlight in the winter.