About Kiyomizu-dera

The Kiyomizu-dera Temple in Kyoto, Japan is a historically significant Buddhist place of worship. It is a UNESCO World Heritage Site and considered to be one of the most well-known temples in all of Japan. The temple was established in the eighth century, and its name comes from a spring of crystal clear water located nearby that is supposed to have curative properties.

The Kiyomizu-dera main hall, which is placed on a high wooden platform and affords spectacular views of Kyoto, is one of the highlights of a visit to the temple complex known as Kiyomizu-dera. There are also a number of other buildings inside the temple grounds, such as a hall that is devoted to the goddess of mercy, a hall that is used for performing religious purifying ceremonies, and a pagoda that has three levels.

Kiyomizu-dera is well-known not only for its architectural and cultural value but also for its stunning gardens and picturesque setting, which is characterized by its proximity to hills and forests. In addition, guests can enjoy browsing the local stores and stalls for traditional Japanese handicrafts and mementos to take home with them.

Visit Kiyomizu-dera if you want to see one of the most magnificent temples in the world, are interested in Buddhism, Japanese history and culture, or simply want to see one of the most beautiful temples in the world. This is a must-see experience.

Also read – 10 days of Japan tour package

History of Kiyomizu-dera

Kiyomizu-dera is an ancient Buddhist temple that can be found in Kyoto, Japan. It has a long and illustrious history that dates all the way back to the eighth century. According to local folklore, the temple was established in 778 by the monk Enchin, who got the idea to build it after having a vision of the bodhisattva Kannon at the adjacent Otowa waterfall. The waterfall is named after the goddess of mercy. “clear water” is the literal translation of the name “Kiyomizu,” which was given to the water that came from a spring located close to the temple and was considered to have curative properties.

Over the course of several centuries, Kiyomizu-dera evolved into one of the most significant and influential temples in Japan. It attracted the attention of many notable figures, such as the Shogun Ashikaga Yoshimitsu, who provided significant funding for extensive renovations to the temple in the 14th century. Kiyomizu-dera was classified as one of the “Three Great Temples of Kyoto” during the Edo period (1603-1867), during which time it was a popular destination for pilgrims.

A fire that broke out in the temple in 1864 caused significant damage, but it was quickly restored and is now recognized as one of the most popular places for tourists to visit in Kyoto. Kiyomizu-dera is recognized as a UNESCO World Heritage Site, and it receives millions of visitors each year. These visitors come to enjoy the temple’s exquisite architecture, as well as its historical significance and breathtaking vistas of Kyoto.

How to reach Kiyomizu-dera

Kiyomizu-dera is a temple in Kyoto, Japan, that is situated in the city’s eastern region and is quite convenient to access by both public transit and taxi. Getting to the temple can be done in a few different ways, including the following:

Bus :It is possible to reach the temple by boarding bus number 100 or 206 from Kyoto Station, and the trip will take approximately twenty to thirty minutes.

Taxis : are widely accessible at Kyoto Station, and the ride to Kiyomizu-dera typically takes between 20 and 30 minutes, depending on the amount of traffic.

Keihan Railway from Kyoto Station – You can also get to the temple by taking the Keihan Railway from Kyoto Station to Gion-Shijo Station. Once you get off the train, it will take you around ten to fifteen minutes to walk to the temple from the station.

By foot: Despite the fact that Kiyomizu-dera is situated atop a hill, it is nevertheless possible to reach the temple by foot from the city’s central business district. The trip can be completed in anywhere from thirty to sixty minutes depending on where you begin.

You can get to Kiyomizu-dera in a quick and simple manner regardless of the mode of transportation you pick, and along the route, you will have the opportunity to take in Kyoto’s rich cultural heritage and natural splendor.

Do's and Dont's at Kiyomizu-dera

Here are a few do’s and don’ts to keep in mind when visiting Kiyomizu-dera, a historic Buddhist temple in Kyoto, Japan:


  1. Respect the temple’s religious significance: Kiyomizu-dera is a place of worship, so visitors are asked to be respectful and refrain from loud or disruptive behavior.
  2. Observe proper dress code: Visitors are expected to dress modestly, with arms and legs covered. Shoes must be removed before entering certain buildings.
  3. Take your time: Kiyomizu-dera is a large temple complex with many buildings and beautiful gardens, so take your time to explore and enjoy all that it has to offer.
  4. Take pictures: Visitors are welcome to take photos, but please be respectful of other visitors and refrain from using flash photography inside buildings.


  1. Don’t touch or lean over the railings: The main hall of Kiyomizu-dera is perched on a high wooden platform, and visitors are asked not to touch or lean over the railings for safety reasons.
  2. Don’t eat or drink inside buildings: Eating and drinking is not allowed inside the temple buildings.
  3. Don’t bring food or drinks into the temple grounds: Food and drinks should be left outside the temple grounds or in designated areas.
  4. Don’t litter: Please dispose of any rubbish in designated areas to keep the temple and its surroundings clean and beautiful.

By following these simple guidelines, visitors can help to preserve the beauty and significance of Kiyomizu-dera and ensure a respectful and enjoyable visit for all.

Highlights of Kiyomizu-dera

Kiyomizu-dera is a Buddhist temple that dates back to the 8th century and is located in Kyoto, Japan. It is famous for its breathtaking architecture, extensive history, and picturesque surroundings. The following is a list of some of the most memorable aspects of a trip to Kiyomizu-dera:

  • Main Hall : Kiyomizu-crowning dera’s achievement is its main hall, which was constructed on a lofty wooden platform and offers panoramic vistas of the city of Kyoto below. This hall is devoted to the bodhisattva of compassion, Kannon, and is famous for the complex architecture it contains.
  • Otowa Waterfall: The Otowa waterfall, which can be seen close to the main hall, is one of the most impressive features of the Kiyomizu-dera Buddhist Temple. It is thought that visitors who drink from any of the three streams of water will be blessed with good health, a long life, and prosperous endeavors.
  • Stage: The main hall is connected to a stage that protrudes out over the hillside and provides stunning vistas of Kyoto. From this one-of-a-kind vantage point, guests will be able to take in the views and appreciate the surroundings.
  • Garden: Kiyomizu-dera is home to a stunning garden that is ideal for leisurely strolls due to the abundance of winding walks, water features, and rock formations that can be found there. A large number of cherry trees, which, when in full bloom, are one of the most beautiful sights of spring, can be seen by tourists.
  • Cultural Properties: Kiyomizu-dera is the location of a number of significant cultural treasures, some of which date back many centuries and include paintings, calligraphy, and sculptures made of wood and bronze.

A trip to this historic temple, Kiyomizu-dera, is likely to be an experience that is both memorable and pleasurable. These are just some of the features that can be found in the temple. Kiyomizu-dera has something to offer everyone, whether they are interested in the history, the architecture, or the gorgeous surroundings, as all of these things can be found there.

Frequently asked questions about Kiyomizu-dera

What is Kiyomizu-dera?
Kiyomizu-dera is a historically significant Buddhist temple that may be found in Kyoto, Japan. The temple is devoted to the bodhisattva of compassion known as Kannon. It is one of the most well-known and frequented tourist spots in Kyoto, and it is well-known for the spectacular architecture, exquisite gardens, and extensive history that it contains.
How do I get to Kiyomizu-dera?
Kiyomizu-dera is a temple in Kyoto that is found in the Higashiyama neighborhood. If you are coming from the main part of the city, you can take a bus or a cab to get there. In addition to this, it is easily accessible on foot from the Gion neighborhood as it is only a short distance away.
What is the entrance fee for Kiyomizu-dera?
Kiyomizu-dera is 400 yen for adults and 300 yen for children. There are discounts available for students, seniors, and groups.
What are the operating hours of Kiyomizu-dera?
The hours that Kiyomizu-dera is available to the public typically range from 6:00 AM to 6:00 PM; however, these hours are subject to change based on the time of year and any special activities that may be taking place. If you are looking for the most recent information, it is recommended that you check either the official website or a tourist information center in your area.
What is the best time to visit Kiyomizu-dera?
It is possible to visit Kiyomizu-dera at any time of the year; however, the ideal times to go are either in the spring, when the cherry trees are in bloom, or in the fall, when the autumn foliage is at its most beautiful. The temple is also exquisitely lit up at night, making it a truly enchanted location to explore once the sun has set.
Can I take photos at Kiyomizu-dera?
Yes, tourists are encouraged to snap photographs while they are at Kiyomizu-dera; however, the use of flash photography is prohibited inside the temple buildings. It is essential that visitors show consideration for one another and refrain from obstructing the views of other guests or disturbing the tranquility and stillness on the grounds of the temple.
Is there dress code for visiting Kiyomizu-dera?
Before entering certain buildings, guests are required to remove their shoes and are asked to dress in a manner that is considered respectful. This includes keeping their arms and legs covered. Inside the temple structures, guests are urged not to touch the rails of the main hall or lean over them for safety concerns. Eating and drinking are also prohibited inside the buildings of the temple.