Konkaikomyo-ji Temple, better known as Kurodani, is a superb and rarely visited (by tourists) temple on Yoshida-yama Hill, a short walk from the Path of Philosophy in Northern Higashiyama.
Kurodani Temple or Konkai Komyo-ji Temple in Northern Higashiyama – image © Damien Douxchamps
If you look west from the Path of Philosophy or the viewpoint at Ginkaku-ji Temple, you will see a hill rising just to your west. This is Yoshida-yama Hill and it’s home to some truly superb temples and shrines. And, best of all, few tourists visit this place because it’s off the main Northern Higashiyama tourist route.
The southernmost temple on this hill, just a short walk from Marutamachi-dori Street is Konkaikomyo-ji Temple. That’s a real mouthful to say, and luckily, almost everyone in Kyoto just calls this temple Kurodani, or, in Kyoto dialect, Kurodani-san (with the honorific at the end, as if it were a person).
The best way to reach Kurodani is to take the narrow alley from Marutamachi-dori, about 250 meters west of Shirakawa-dori. The alley is just on the west side of Okazaki-jinja Shrine, which in turn is next to Hotel Heian-no-Mori. Walk up the alley and you’ll soon come out at the bottom of the steps leading to the temple graveyard and pagoda. You’ll want to explore these, but first, head to your left and walk up the gentle incline to the wide area in front of the main hall. You can enter the main hall free of charge. During the fall (usually all of November and fist week of December), the temple opens its back garden, which you must pay Y600 to enter. Usually, we’re happy to just sit quietly for a moment in the main hall and soak up the atmosphere.
Then, walk back to the graveyard and climb the steps to the pagoda at the top. The view over Kyoto is great from here. You can then navigate some narrow lanes going north from the pagoda, past lovely little Saiun-in Subtemple to come out behind the main hall of the superb Shinyo-do Temple.
121 Kurodani-cho, Sakyo-ku
free, admission charged during special garden opening
5min walk from Okazaki Michi Bus Stop, Kyoto City Bus 100 from Kyoto Station
Website: Official Website (English)
Where Is This Place Located?See these places on our Kyoto Google map:
- Open the Kyoto map
- You will see the list of places on the left hand side. (Click the 3-line icon in the top left corner if not). Scroll down or use the map search (the magnifying glass icon) to find the place you want.
- Click the name of the place in the list. Its location pin will be highlighted on the map.
- Map pins are color coded - BLUE: Hotels | VIOLET: Ryokan | PINK: Places to Eat | YELLOW: Things to See and Do
- If you're using the map on your phone, open the map and then search for the name of the place. The map will then zoom in on its location.
Near To Here:
Kurodani Temple is located in Kyoto’s Northern Higashiyama district. See our complete list of things to do in Northern Higashiyama, including places to eat, nightlife and places to stay.
Kyoto Vacation Checklist
- For all the essentials in a brief overview, see my First Time In Kyoto guide
- Check Kyoto accommodation availability on Booking.com - usually you can reserve a room with no upfront payment. Pay when you check out. Free cancellations too.
- Need tips on where to stay? See my one page guide Where To Stay In Kyoto
- See my comprehensive Packing List For Japan
- Buy a data-only SIM card online for collection when you arrive at Kansai International Airport (for Osaka and Kyoto) or Tokyo's Narita Airport. Or rent an unlimited data pocket wifi router.
- Compare Japan flight prices and timings to find the best deals
- If you're visiting more than one city, save a ton of money with a Japan Rail Pass - here's my explanation of why it's worth it
- A prepaid Icoca card makes travelling around Kyoto easy - here's how.
- Get travel insurance for Japan - we recommend World Nomads (and here's why)