Monday, February 14, 2011

Japan: Silver Pavilion & Sanjusangen-do

Ginkaku-ji, also known as the Silver Pavilion, was the retirement villa of Ashikaga Yoshimasa, grandson of Ashikaga Yishimitsu (who built the Golden Palace).  He built this pavilion for retirement so that after retirement it could turn into a temple...much like Kinkaku-ji, the Golden Palace.  When I first arrived I thought, where's the silver?  His initial plans were to coat the building in silver foil; however, construction was halted because of the Onin War.  The silver foil never was placed on the pavilion.
The pavilion is not nearly as beautiful as the Golden Palace; however, I though the garden was much more impressive.

 This sand sculpture is very important to the garden and models Mount Fuji.

 Before leaving for Japan, I read on Trip Advisor that Sanjusangen-do was the #1 spot in Kyoto.  I disagree.  The temple was beautiful and impressive, but maybe not a must-see.  It was built in 1266 and is 393 feet long.  There are 1,001 Statues of Kannon inside, slightly with a different expression.  No photos were allowed inside so I just took a few outside.

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