Pure water temple

Kiyomizudera (清水寺, literally “Pure Water Temple”) is one of the most celebrated temples of Japan and that’s where we’re headed next.

It’s a perfect excuse to retrace our steps through the beautiful cobbled streets of Ninen-zaka and Sannen-zaka.

These are to be found in the Higashiyama District which is one of Kyoto’s best preserved historic districts.

Kiyomizudera was founded in 780 on the site of the Otowa Waterfall in the wooded hills east of Kyoto, and derives its name from the fall’s pure waters.

Before we head up to the actual temple I am entranced by this man in traditional garb.

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In the temple grounds are more Japanese women dressed to the nines in traditional colourful outfits.

Kiyomizudera is best known for its impressive wooden stage that juts out from its main hall, 13 meters above the hillside below

The stage, and the main hall, were both built without a single nail. An impressive feat of architecture.

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The famed Otowa Waterfall is located at the base of Kiyomizudera’s main hall. Its waters are divided into three separate streams, and visitors use cups attached to long poles to drink from them.

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Each stream is believed to have different benefits, these are long life, success at school and a happy love life.

However, drinking from all three streams is a no no as it is considered greedy.

Kiyomizudera is a busy temple that is thronged with tourists and locals alike, full of colour and interesting sights. Another that is well worth a visit.

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