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Autumn Color Report 2011
Official autumn color reports by japan-guide.com
Guide to Autumn Colors - Schedule of upcoming reports - Post your own report

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2011/11/20 - Kyoto Report
by schauwecker

Higashiyama District

Today I visited multiple temples along the Higashiyama Mountains, starting at Tofukuji and ending at Eikando. The colors have not peaked yet at any of the temples, but their progress should accelerate from now thanks to a temperature drop to below ten degrees during the nights.

The maple trees at Tofukuji Temple made already for a spectacular sight today, despite still being several days away from the peak of their autumnal beauty. Note that the temple opens half an hour earlier than usually at 8:30 during the autumn color season, which can be a good timing for a less crowded visit.

Tofukuji Temple around 8:30am
Some of the most brilliant colors at Tofukuji Temple
Morning sun rays enhance the autumn colors at Tofukuji Temple
Expect crowds when visiting Tofukuji Temple in autumn

The colors at Kiyomizudera have barely made any progress since my visit last week, but they should improve thanks to the lower nighttime temperatures from now. Night illuminations are held here through December 4 (18:30 to 21:30, 400 yen).

Kiyomizudera Temple
Green is still dominating at Kiyomizudera Temple
A wooden scaffolding is constructed around Amida Hall

At nearby Kodaiji some maple trees have already turned into quite brilliant colors; however, overall the season is still at an early stage. The temple's dry garden, which is known for its changing, modern designs, features sculptures of two dragons this year. Night illuminations are held through December 4 (sunset to 21:30, 600 yen).

Kodaiji Temple with some colors
Dragons in Kodaiji's dry garden
Autumn colors at an early stage at Kodaiji Temple
Walking path below Kodaiji Temple

Along the way to Nanzenji, I passed Daiunin Temple with its Gionkaku Tower that is shaped like a float of the Gion Matsuri. Not usually open to the public, the tower has currently a special opening until November 30 (10:00 to 16:00, 500 yen) and offers great views over the Higashiyama District from its top floor.

Gionkaku Tower
Views from Gionkaku Tower
Views from Gionkaku Tower
The weeping cherry tree at Maruyama Park further along the way to Nanzenji

The colors around Nanzenji's Sanmon Gate were still sparse and at an early stage, but in the subtemple Tenjuan the trees have already developed into rather spectacular colors. Tenjuan offers night illuminations through November 30 (17:30 to 21:00, 500 yen).

Tenjuan Temple
Fountain at Tenjuan Temple
Walls of Tenjuan Temple

Only a short walk away, Eikando has also started to turn colorful, but overall the peak of the season is still several days ahead. Night illuminations are held through November 30 (17:30 to 20:30, 600 yen). Daytime admission is a rather steep 1000 yen.

Eikando Temple
Eikando Temple
Eikando Temple

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List of Posts:
2011/12/13 - Tokyo Report
2011/12/08 - Kamakura Report
2011/12/05 - Tokyo Report
2011/12/02 - Kyoto Report
2011/12/01 - Nara Report

2011/11/30 - Kyoto Report
2011/11/29 - Kyoto Report
2011/11/28 - Kyoto Report
2011/11/27 - Tokyo Report
2011/11/27 - Kyoto Report
2011/11/23 - Kanazawa Report
2011/11/22 - Tokyo Report
2011/11/22 - Kyoto Report
2011/11/21 - Miyajima Report
2011/11/20 - Kyoto Report
2011/11/18 - Kyoto Report
2011/11/15 - Tokyo Report
2011/11/13 - Kyoto Report
2011/11/12 - Unzen Report
2011/11/09 - Sakurayama Report
2011/11/08 - Fujigoko Report
2011/11/04 - Kurobe Report
2011/11/02 - Mitakesan Report

2011/10/27 - Nikko Report
2011/10/27 - Towadako Report
2011/10/26 - Hakkodasan Report
2011/10/21 - Fukushima Report
2011/10/20 - Zao Report
2011/10/19 - Naruko Report
2011/10/12 - Nikko Report
2011/10/12 - Oze Report
2011/10/07 - Nasu Report
2011/10/03 - Nikko Report

2011/09/27 - Norikura Report
2011/09/14 - Ginsendai Report
2011/09/13 - Asahidake Report

Tours and Experiences