The temple is set in beautiful gardens. I meant to buy a ticket which included entry into the temple but instead managed to buy a ticket for the garden only.
In the end I don’t think it mattered much as the gardens are the most beautiful part of the temple complex.
The temple overlooks a lake and I imagine the gardens would look spectacular during autumn when the leaves change colour.
The temple backs onto the Bamboo Grove so there are plenty of bamboo trees in the garden.
You can access the Bamboo Grove directly from the temple grounds.
Now in my mind, I was walking through the Grove on my own and enjoying the wind rustling through the leaves. The picture on the right is in fact the reality.
As you walk along the Grove there’s a sign pointing in the direction of the Okochi Sanso Villa, the former home of a movie actor.
The villa, which is not open to the public, is surrounded by gardens.
The garden is green, lush and very quiet looking out over the hills of Kyoto.
After the crowds along the Bamboo Grove, I really enjoyed the solitude. As part of the entry fee you’re given Japanese tea and a Japanese sweet. That was my first taste of matcha tea but it wasn't going to be my last as I went to a Japanese tea ceremony later that day.
I don’t have any photos of the ceremony at the En Tea House, but I can tell you although I’m not much of a fan of matcha tea (way too bitter for my taste buds) I found the ceremony very graceful and balletic. I bought some matcha tea from Ipoddo and now have a tea scoop and whisk as a memento of my time in Kyoto. I’m sure there will be some matcha flavoured goodies on the blog in the future.
I walked back to my hotel and passed by this cute little shop. I planned a return visit to buy some goodies but ran out of time. They don't have a website, so I guess I might just have to go back Kyoto.
See you all again next week with some more baking, I think. I just have so many recipes I want to try and not enough time to bake.
Bye for now,