Souji-in

Location: Kyoto, Southern Honshu & Kyushu | Japan

Price guide: £££££ £100-£200 per person per night

With a history that can traced back to the early 12th century, Souji-in is a serene working monastery offering traditional Japanese accommodation for those who want to experience a Buddhist way of life. During your stay, you can rest in the beautiful gardens around the temple, take part in afternoon meditations and watch early morning prayers, all presided over by one of the world’s most sacred mountains.
Perfect forA quiet one-night intermission during a busy and adventurous itinerary.
In the know
  • Ancient monastery offering traditional accommodation.
  • Located in the heart of where Shingon Buddhism was formed. 
  • Chance to take part in morning prayer and afternoon meditations.
  • A world away from everything – one night will suffice in order to have a once-in-a-lifetime experience.

Recommended for...

  • Cultural Immersion
  • History & Heritage
  • Peace & Quiet
  • Eco-tourism

Hotel Overview

Sense of place

Located on the main street in the small town of Koyasan, just north of the sacred Mount Koyasan.

Rooms at Souji-in

At Souji-in you’ll find traditional tatami rooms with futons, sliding paper doors and exquisitely painted screens, though there is also the option of a western bed. All rooms have a western-style toilet while some also have a private bathroom - a rare commodity amongst the shukubo (temple lodgings) on Mount Koya.

Food and drink

Shojin ryori is the Japanese term for Buddhist vegetarian cooking and is one of the daily activities for some practising Buddhist monks, with some meals taking up to 3 hours to prepare.  You’ll be served generous portions of tasty shojin ryori on the low kotatsu tables in your bedroom.

Facilities

There is a Zen garden - just perfect for relaxing in the afternoon – and there are communal baths, where you can spend a few hours warming up during the colder months or relaxing after a strenuous hike.

Activities at Souji-in

For a real insight into the Buddhist faith, there are three activities that we highly recommend trying out. When you arrive in the afternoon, join the meditation sessions to jump straight into the lifestyle of the monks. Follow this with a guided night walk to the famous and very beautiful cemetery, Okunoin, where Kobo Dayshi is buried (the most well-known monk in Japan and the founder of Shingon Buddhism), and after a peaceful night’s rest, wake up early for the morning prayer.  

Best time to go

Best time to travel

Good time to travel (but some limitations)

Travel is possible (but it’s not the best time)

Travel is not recommended

  • Jan
  • Feb
  • Mar
  • Apr
  • May
  • Jun
  • Jul
  • Aug
  • Sep
  • Oct
  • Nov
  • Dec
Best time to go

Hotel location

70km from Kansai International Airport and a 2-hour drive from Osaka city centre.

Stay at Souji-in on these trips

More places to stay in Kyoto, Southern Honshu & Kyushu

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