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Myōshin-ji Daihō-in
妙心寺 大法院

Daihō-in is a sub-temple of Myōshin-ji located in the north-east of the large temple complex. It only opens twice a year, usually for a few weeks in late April/early May and from mid-October to late November. Daihō-in’s garden is among Kyōto’s best places to enjoy maple trees, be it early summer “fresh green” or the vivid colors of late autumn. While it can get rather crowded in autumn — I was lucky the first time I visited in 2018 and got a few seconds without people the second time — visiting the temple is definitely worth your time and energy.
A visit to Daihō-in comes along with a cup of Maccha, and in the buildings, ceramics with maple leaves from the temple and made by the monk himself can be bought, but I recommend to visit early in the season — the best bowls tend to sell out rather quickly. A smaller tea house (no photo) as well as the temple grounds can be visited as well, but for us photographers, the main garden is perhaps most interesting. I recommend to visit on days with soft light.

Admission: open twice a year in April/May and October/November.
Nearby places of interest: Keishun-in, Daishin-in, Taizō-in, Tōrin-in

Shinnyodo 2017.jpg

Autumn at Daihō-in.

Summer 夏
Autumn 秋
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