Ryoanji

Nestled at the base of Kyoto’s Mount Kinugasa, Ryoanji Temple dates back to 983, though the temple was officially founded in 1467, and a number of the present buildings are reconstructions dating to 1800.

Hardly anyone visits to see the buildings, though. Ryoanji is home to Japan’s most famous karesansui or dry landscape garden- arguably both the first and the best of its kind. The garden is a masterpiece of Zen art, and consists of white raked gravel and fifteen stones, of which only fourteen can be seen at any one time.