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This cultural heritage of ancient Kyoto is registered as a world heritage cultural site. The main hall on the cliff with the veranda that is famous as the "stage of Kiyomizu," has been rebuilt by Iemitsu Tokugawa in 1633. You can see the city of Kyoto from the stage, which was built by assembling wooden pillars without using a single nail. Other attractions include the three-storied pagoda, an important cultural heritage, the Otowa waterfall, known for its effects on a long life, health and academic success, and the Koyasu-no-To, a tower for safe child birth. It is also a famous spot for cherry blossoms and autumn leaves, attracting many visitors throughout the year. Night visits are allowed in spring, summer and autumn, where the beautiful dreamy atmosphere through the lighting takes everybody's breath away.
- 1-294 Kiyomizu, Higashiyama-ku, Kyoto-shi, Kyoto
- Contact No.
- From JR Kyoto Station, take city bus 206 for 10 min, get off at Gojo-zaka, and walk for 10 min. Alternatively, 20-min walk from Shimizu Gojo Station on Keihan Electric Railway
- Opening Hours / Holidays
Open all year round
- Official Website
- Time Required
- 30 min
- Admission fee
- Adults 400 yen, children 200 yen
※ Some information is displayed in Japanese and machine-translated English, which may not be accurate.
For the latest information, please check the official website for each spot.
This gate is also called the red gate and stands gracefully as the face of Kiyomizu-dera. Many people stop for pictures at this beautiful and gorgeous gate. The koma-inu (lion dogs), both of which unusually have their mouths open, are said to be spreading the teachings of Buddha to the world.
Stage of Kiyomizu
Extending from the main hall that stands on a cliff, the stage of Kiyomizu is supported by 139 pillars and is a great viewing spot which offers the sight of Kyoto city. The impressive wooden structure that was built with a unique technique without using a single nail is registered as a national treasure. The stage is laid with 410 pieces of cypress boards.
Skeleton of the stage
The crossing point between the horizontal and vertical pillars are connected using a technique called tsugite. The base is fixed and strengthened without using a single nail. This structure allows the multiple wood pieces in a grid to distribute the impact and makes it possible to construct a building with high earthquake resistance on a cliff, where construction is normally difficult.
This waterfall, flowing down in three divided streams of pure water (kiyo mizu), is where Kiyomizu-dera's name originated. It has been called "golden water" and "water of life" and has been cherished since ancient times. There is always a long line of people who come to collect the water that supposedly fulfills wishes of long life, health and academic success.
Jishu shrine, located on the north side of the main hall of Kiyomizu-dera, is a shrine for luck in marriage and is a historic monument, rumored to have existed since before the founding of Japan. It is known as a shrine for luck in marriage and love, has a "rock of foreseeing love" that predicts the outcome of your love life and has enshrined many such lucky charm deities. Many women and couples can be seen here.
Evening light up
Thrice every year in spring, summer and autumn, the area is illuminated and especially beautiful is the autumn foliage glowing in the warm light. The magical sight with lights stands out against the dark night sky and is incredibly romantic. The blue light shining from Kiyomizu-dera into the night sky in a single line represents the melancholy of the goddess of mercy and is a beautiful sight seen from Kyoto city as well.
The three-storied pagoda has a symbol existence in Kiyomizu-dera and was built in the year 847. With a height of 31 meters, it is the tallest three-storied pagoda in the country. The tower is painted in a vivid red and is one of the main attractions of Kiyomizu-dera, along with the stage and the main hall. It is a registered national treasure.
This is a street leading from Yasaka to Kiyomizu-dera and is also called Sanneizaka. The steep cobbled stone hill continues for about 100 meters and is an important protected area with historic monuments. Many old-style souvenir shops are lined up in this popular spot that is filled with the charm of Kyoto.