Ohara, located in the northeastern part of Kyoto City, is a basin village surrounded by mountains on all sides. The village is located at the northwestern foot of Mt. Hiei, the head temple of the Tendai sect of Buddhism. And the Takano River, a tributary of the Kamo River, runs through the village to the southwest. It was also a stopover point on the “Wakasa Kaido” highway, which mainly carried marine products from Wakasa (Obama, Fukui Prefecture) to Kyoto.
Ohara is easily accessible from Kyoto Station. It takes just over 40 minutes by train and bus.
The name “Ohara” might have derived from Ohara-ji Temple (the collective name of Shorinin Temple and Raigoin Temple). Ohara is dotted with temples of the Tendai sect, including Shorinin Temple, Raigoin Temple, Sanzenin Temple, and Jakkoin Temple. Since ancient times, Ohara has been a mountain village chosen by aristocrats and literary figures as a place to live in seclusion away from the capital.
This course takes you several temples in Ohara, namely Sanzenin, Shorinin, Hosenin, Jikkoin, Raigoin and Jakkoin. Temples other than Jakkoin are near Sanzenin.
Several temples offer matcha and sweets. But if you visit Hosenin, a cup of matcha and sweet is included in the entrance fee. So there is no need to buy matcha at other temples.
Sanzenin Temple is a popular tourist spot in Ohara, with cultural assets such as Amida Sanzonzon statues and beautiful gardens.
Shorinin Temple used to be the center of Shomyo (Buddhist chanting). The principal image of the Amida Nyorai sits in the main hall.
Hosenin Temple has three gardens. Visitors first go up to the tatami room to view Bankanen garden, known as “framed garden”. Enjoy Tea and a sweet.
In the garden of Jikkoin Temple, you can enjoy cherry blossoms and autumn leaves at the same time. In winter, visitors enjoy snow.
In the Raigoin Temple, Yakushi, Amida, and Shaka statues greet visitors. These are works from the Fujiwara period and are important cultural properties.
Jakkoin Temple is a nunnery in Ohara. This is the temple where Kenreimonin, daughter of Taira no Kiyomori, spent the rest of her life.