Kiyomizu-dera, Kyoto, Japan

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During my short stay in Japan, I visited a beautiful Buddhist temple in Kyoto, Kiyomizu-dera. Can you guys believe how old this temple is? It originated in 778 when a monk, Enchin, envisioned Kannon — Lord of compassion, Goddess of mercy — on the mountain overlooking the Otowa-no taki Falls. Then, in 798, general Sakanoue no Tamuramaro built a Buddha hall there, following which the Kiyomizu-dera temple came under the official patronage of Emperor Kanmu. It was repeatedly destroyed by fire over the centuries, but thankfully was rebuilt on each occasion. The central building (top picture), the Hondo, was built in 1633! So much history! And wanna hear something even more amazing? Of course you do. Not a single nail was used in the construction!

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Down here is where you can find the Otowa-no taki. It is believed that the water has therapeutic properties, so many visitors come and drink for health, wisdom and longevity. So obviously, I went there and drank a ton of that blessed sacred water. Is it just me, but doesn’t it look like a small secluded ninja clan neighborhood? I could just imagine ninjas jumping around here and there.

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This is the Torii of Jishu-jinja, a matchmaking shrine dedicated to Okuninushi, a god of love and “good matches”. There, you will find two stones a few meters apart, and if you successfully walk safely from one stone to the other with your eyes closed in one try, your wish will be granted soon. If you fail, it will be very long before your love will be realized. So it is safe to say that there are many visitors here, especially young girls.

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If you do plan to visit Kiyomizu-dera, I highly recommend to go early in the morning since it’s a very popular place to visit in Kyoto. I went there around 6AM when they open, and the streets were all closed. It was very peaceful. I like visiting shrines and temples when there aren’t many people. I mean, you want to feel calm and zen when you’re at these type of places. But perhaps, that’s just me. I’ll end the post here, with a few more pictures. If you guys would like to hear more of my trips or see more pictures, let me know!

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