This article is introducing the famous shrine Heian Jingu in Kyoto covered up in snow. You’ll be amazed the breathtaking view of its garden!
Hello friends, it’s KOKORO MOYOU from Kyoto!
I am going to share very rare and breathtaking view of the famous shrine Heian Jingu in Kyoto covered in snow! The address of the shrine is as follows: 97 Nishi-Tenno-Cho, Okazaki, Sakyo-ku, Kyoto-shi.
I visited the shrine on 19 January 2014. Kyoto gets snow once in every couple years. If you are lucky, you will see sheines, temples, and Japanese gardens covered in snow and they become super photogenic!
What To See In Heian Jingu
Heian Jingu has the spacious and beautiful garden in its premise. The garden has devided four sections and each of them has beautiful scenery. The ponds in the garden reflect trees and buildings covered in snow… I think snowy Kyoto is beautiful anywhere, but Heian Jingu is definitely my favourite place to visit.
History Of Heian Jingu
The shrine worships Emperor Kanmu (the 50th Emperor, goverened the nation in 8th century), and Emperor Koumei (the 121st Emperor, goverened the nation until the end of Sakoku -national isolation period-). Heian Jingu was originally built for Emperor Kanmu in memory of his dedication of moving the capital to Heian-kyo (the former name of Kyoto) in 1985 which was after 1,100 years since the capital relocation. In 1940, the shrine added Emperor Koumei to worship in there. He was the last Emperor who goverened the nation while Heian-kyo was the capital.
The main building was burned down in an arson attack in 1976, but it was rebuilt three years after the event by heartfelt donations from all over the coutry. The sacred ground and the buildings in the premise are registered as one of the nation’s scenic beauty spots.
Jingu Shin-en Garden
Minami Shin-en (south)
The picture below is taken in Minami Jin-en (south section). From here, I will walk around to Nishi Shin-en (west), Higashi Shin-en (east), Naka Shin-en (middle)
The shrine pavilions are painted in dramatic vermillion.
The train in Minami Shin-en is recognized as the oldest train in Japan.
Minami Shin-en Garden in snow.
What a beautiful reflection on the pond.
You will enjoy snowy view from everywhere in the ground.
Walking towards Nishi-Shin-en (west garden).
Byakko-ike pondo is in the middle of Nishi Shin-en. Very rare view of the pond in snow.
Another fantastic reflection on the pond… There are some tiny peninsula-like land called Dejima in the west of the pond and the fall in the north side of the pond.
Naka Shin-en (middle)
Souryu-ike pond is in Naka Shin-en Garden.
Naka Shin-en is preserved as it was when the shrine was built.
There is a bridge called Garyukyo from east to north over the pond.
Higashi Shin-en (east)
Higashi Shin-en Garden has the pond called Seihou-ike.
This building is called Saikan. It is a typical model of modern Japanese architecture.
Dramatic view of Shoubikan (known as Kihinkan) building.
Blue sky and white snow make the view even more beautiful…!
The picture below is called Taiheikaku (known as Hashidono). Taiheikaku and Shoubikan were relocated from the Imprial Palace in Kyoto.
Thin layered snow on the trees looks like bloomed cherry blossom.
The view from the other side of Taiheikaku.
Taiheikaku (far left) and Shoubikan (right) together in the picture.
How did you like it? There are many temples and shrines having beautiful gardens in Kyoto, but none of them is this spacious and well maintained all year round. Each garden and each building has beautiful history. Please visit Heian Jingu and think of the past what this shrine going through...