Nanzen-ji temple is located at the base of Kyoto’s forested Higashiyama mountains. It is one of the most important Zen temples in all of Japan.
The Sanmon entrance gate, constructed in 1628, was very impressive and I had the opportunity to enter and climb to its balcony for some incredible views.
The Hatto (Dharma Hall) was also very impressive, but not open to the public. However, the Hojo, or former residence of the head monk, was. Once inside, one can walk along covered walkways and view the extensive rock gardens, the largest of which has rocks which are said to resemble tigers and cubs crossing through water.
In addition, there is a tearoom with a view of a small waterfall. I took the opportunity to have some tea and a treat. Having arrived early in the morning, I had the garden to myself, and relaxed and enjoyed the tranquility of the tearoom and waterfall without interruption for over an hour.