Hōkyō-in (宝筺院)
Hōkyō-in (宝筺院)

Hokyo-in (not to be confused with Hokyo-ji 宝鏡寺) is located in the west part of Kyoto, in Arashiyama. The lack of English documentation means that I can only give bits and bytes gathered on the interweb. And in fact this is going to be limited to the name of the person who ordered its construction: Emperor Shirakawa 白河天皇 (1053-1129).

The really interesting thing about this temple is not much its history, but how beautiful its garden is in autumn. The problem is, as anyone who lived in Japan for more than 3 months will have guessed, that this means it is also 'particularly crowded' during this peak season. And also that the hordes of tourists who come to visit it will forget all their Japanese self control when it comes to take 'the picture they saw on TV'. For this reason, Hokyo-in is one of the most strict temples when it comes to taking pictures (short of banning them of course). The rules are basically: you cannot enter the temple if you have a tripod/monopod. Doesn't matter if you say you won't use it. Because everyone knows the urge will be too strong to contain, and sooner or later you will use it. So the temple is doing the right thing, but it means you will have to leave your tripod in a coin locker (if it fits) or simply not take it on that day. The temple won't store your tripod for the duration of your visit either, no need to ask. Also, medium format cameras or larger are banned too. The biggest camera you can bring is a DSLR. And hope they don't think it's too big.

However, the great thing is that they do allow you to take pictures, and compared to all the temples than ban shooting this is GREAT. Be warned that just because tripods are banned doesn't mean that the average Japanese ojii-san won't go mental about getting 'his' million-dollar picture. Japanese can become very, very annoying whenever they go see a packed festival/temple/museum/onsen/...

Recommended for: Access:

Nearby: Seiryō-ji 清涼寺 (190m), Enri-an 厭離庵 (240m), Rakushisha 落柿舎 (310m), Furoan フロアン (450m), Nison-in 二尊院 (460m), Shōkaku-ji 正覚寺 (490m), Jōjakkō-ji 常寂光寺‎ (510m), Nonomiya-jinja 野宮神社 (510m), Bamboo alley 嵯峨竹林 (560m), Giyō-ji 祇王寺‎ (590m),...

Keywords: Japan, 日本, Japon, Kansai, 関西, Kinki, 近畿, Kyoto, 京都, 嵐山, arashiyama, 宝筺院, temple, お寺, 寺院, 卍, 仏閣, hokyo-in, houkyou-in, hokyoin, houkyouin, ほうきょういん

Visited on 5 occasions, id: 334, 21 photos (23 extra photos can be found in the archive).

Photos of Hōkyō-in:

Autumn colors in Hokyo-in (宝筺院)
Autumn colors and keitai photographer (Hokyo-in 宝筺院)
Autumn colors (Hokyo-in 宝筺院)
Maple trees from temple hall (Hokyo-in 宝筺院)