Former Chikurin-in


The Former Chikurin-in, also known as Kyuchikurin-in, is located in the Sakamoto area of Otsu, Shiga Prefecture. It is a former satobo, or a monk retirement residence. This particular one was home to many monks after they finished their tenure on Enryakuji Temple on Mt. Hiei, at the foot of which sits Sakamoto.


In the front of the main window of the residence stretches a 3,300 square meter Japanese garden, as well as two tea houses and summer gazebos that were built in the Taisho Period. This garden can be enjoyed from the tatami mats inside or outside on one of the many garden paths. With many different kinds of trees, plants, and flowers, this garden is beautiful year-round.



Hiyoshi Chaen Tea:

The Sakamoto area is also known for being the origin place of Japanese tea, originally brought to Japan from China by the monk Saicho, around the year A.D. 805. Japan’s first tea plantation, Hiyoshi Chaen, is indicated to this day by vermillion fencing next to Kiehan Sakamoto Hieizan-guchi Station. Kyuchikurin-in is unique in that is still serves this tea, continuing on this important heritage of Sakamoto.




The beautiful garden reflected in the table has become a popular picture on Instagram, and can be viewed under the Japanese hashtags #旧竹リフレand #旧竹林院.
Since we are quite the international lot, with this blog and video we are also starting hashtags for English, French, and Portuguese! When you visit Kyuchikurin-in, be sure to get this iconic reflection picture and post it to Instagram with the hashtags #kyuchikureflection, #refletskyuchikurin, #reflexosdokyuchiku, as well as #hellootsu and #gobiwako. Add in a #yobiwako if you somehow happened to hear about it from this blog!

美しい庭園がテーブルに映っているイメージは最近インスタグラムで人気になり、ハッシュタグ#旧竹リフレと#旧竹林院を検索すると見ることができます。私たち国際交流員はけっこう国際的なので、この記事と動画で英語、フランス語、ポルトガル語のハッシュタグもスタートします!旧竹林院を訪問する際に、この人気であるリフレ写真を撮り、インスタグラムで#kyuchikureflection, #refletskyuchikurin,そして #reflexosdokyuchikuのハッシュタグをぜひ付けておいてください。もしよろしければ、さらに#hellootsuと #gobiwakoもつけてください!この記事で知ったら、ぜひ#yobiwakoもお願いします!


The closest station to the Former Chikurin-in is Sakamoto Hieizan-guchi Station on the Keihan Sakamoto-Ishiyamadera Line in Otsu, from which it is roughly a 10 minute walk. It is also accessible via JR, located about a 20 minute walk from JR Hieizan-Sakamoto Station. Alternatively, if you happen to be coming down Mt. Hiei via the Sakamoto Cable, it is less than a 5 minute walk from the bottom of the mountain.


We hope to see you there!


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