Kozan-ji is an ancient temple set in a lovely forest to the northwest of Kyoto. Said to have been established in the 8th Century, the temple was restored in the 12th Century by the high priest Myoe. It is recognized by UNESCO as a World Cultural Heritage site.
The four painted scrolls are considered to be the first manga in Japan
The precinct also contains the oldest tea fields in Japan, believed to have been first planted by Myoe
It can be accessible by train or bus.
Take the JR Bus Takao/Keihoku Route to Toganoo from JR Kyoto Station.
Alternately take the number #8 bus from either Shijo Station and get off at Kajino or the Takao bus stop.
Kozan-ji’s most important structure is the Sekisui-in, the former residence of a member of the Imperial family moved to the temple, and now designated as a National Treasure. It is one of the last remaining examples of Kamakura Period architecture.
Sekisui-in is famous for its Choju-Jinbutsu-giga, four painted scrolls dating from around the 10th and 11th centuries. The originals can be seen in the Tokyo National Museum, with the ones displayed here being precise replicas of the original.
Also within the spacious precincts is the Butto, a pagoda built for the purpose of Buddhist worship, and the atmospheric Founder’s Hall, set back amongst the tree. Both are designated as an Important Cultural Property.