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Reviewed 24 July 2016

Spending a night at Jimyo-in was an experience of a different world. In spring it was cold - we were glad of the heater under the table and the kerosene heater for the room. Definitely chilly heading down the corridor to the shared bathrooms. However, it was wonderful staying in such a tranquil, beautiful and traditional environment.
Your food is served in your room and is a vegetarian (vegan?) spread, served on raised trays. Up early in the morning for prayers before breakfast.
Koya-san is slightly complicated to get to, but well worth the effort and we definitely enjoyed our night at Jimyo-in.

Date of stay: March 2016
  • Trip type: Travelled with family
    • Sleep Quality
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
2  Thank pHzahBKr
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews as part of our industry-leading trust & safety standards. Read our transparency report to learn more.
Reviewed 15 July 2016 via mobile

Just stayed here a few days ago and enjoyed the entire visit. My family spent one night and the temple is easy to access near to the number 8 bus stop. During our visit there were very few other guests (mid-week). There are a few monks who speak English and a few who only speak Japanese. The room was large and had a nice view of the garden. The food was good and when I asked the monk what the food was he did explain it all. They did hold our luggage after we checked out. The rooms do have air conditioning. The rooms don't have bathrooms and the shared bathrooms were clean.

We did attend morning prayers and they lasted about 30 minutes and were conducted by two priests. They did ask that you show up at 6:20 to attend the prayers. When we got back to our room our breakfast was waiting. Breakfast and dinner are served to you in your room.

Date of stay: July 2016
Trip type: Travelled with family
2  Thank GMack73
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews as part of our industry-leading trust & safety standards. Read our transparency report to learn more.
Reviewed 28 May 2016

We had stayed at another temple in Koyasan prior to coming to Jimyoin. They were priced very similarly. In comparison, the rooms in Jimyoin were larger and they provided a nice balcony sitting space with garden views. You were also provided with full sized towels along with the modesty towels.

The meals were served in the privacy of the room rather than communal dining. The food quality was similar at both temples and consisted of the usual tofu, miso, rice and pickled veg. The beds were average in terms of being comfortable and the pillows small and hard.

The morning prayer service ran from 6:30-7am and this was done by one monk. Like everything else, it was also very similar to the neighbouring temple (although the other had two monks and ran for an hour).

Overall, I do not think there is a huge difference in experience in temples based on trying two. If you were staying more than one night- I would recommend trying different temples as it was fun to see how these operated so similarly!

Whilst you stay in the temple, other than my own reading I did (books provided in room), just by being there, I did not really learn much about the daily life of a monk. It would be great if the temples ran information sessions or Q/A sessions…. more information in English would be fabulous (for those who cannot master Japanese)!

Date of stay: April 2016
  • Trip type: Travelled as a couple
    • Value
    • Sleep Quality
    • Service
4  Thank Letthemeatdust
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews as part of our industry-leading trust & safety standards. Read our transparency report to learn more.
Reviewed 10 May 2016

There are over 50 temples that accept overnight guests, so it's hard to narrow down a choice. I chose this one from the reviews here (and for its nearness to the cemetery) and wasn't disappointed. We spent two nights in a room on the main floor across from the shared bathroom, with a great view of one of the gardens and the hills behind us. The shared bath was great, the food unusual and delicious. The dinner on day 2 was not the same as on day 1, so you won't get a repeat. Other reviewers point out that it's all vegan - 1000 ways with tofu - but the monks also don't use spices either, so it's on the bland side. Still, it's filling and unconventional. If you want predictable, familiar meals, you won't like staying in a temple.

The sutra chanting at 6:30 AM was fascinating - we had two monks the first day and one the second. It's not flashy but it is worth attending, especially because they need us guests our of our rooms so they can fold up our futons and prepare for our breakfasts. Even it April it was cold in the temple, so dress warmly. My down jacket still smells like incense.

We didn't have a sink in our room as someone else mentioned. I thought the futon was thick enough for comfort but I hate those pillows one finds in ryokans and elsewhere: small squares filled only with some kind of chopped up plastic straws. I ended up folding one of the seat cushions in half and wrapping my down jacket around it before stuffing it in the pillowcase instead.

If you've got western-sized feet, the one-size indoor slippers won't fit you. I think the monks secretly get a kick out of watching us do the shuffle-hop-walk to try to keep them on our feet. And don't forget to switch them for the toilet slippers (in 50s pink for women) and especially don't wear the toilet slippers back out in the hall.

The monks are very kind but as others pointed out, it's not really set up to be an educational experience in Shingon Buddhism for the guests, but an inn.

They accept credit cards for payment. Good thing, because we had prepaid all our other 7 hotels but forgot that this was not prepaid. Also, no internet here but go to the TI in the center of town and you'll have access.

Access to the cemetery is about a 10 min walk. We visited at length in the afternoon and again at night, which is a worthwhile experience. It was foggy that evening and added to the mysterious flavor. Perfectly safe - lanterns are lit along the path and there are others also walking there.

We almost chose to skip Koya-san because it's a bit complicated to get to on public transit, but it turned out to be one of our favorite parts of the trip.

Date of stay: April 2016
  • Trip type: Travelled as a couple
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Service
4  Thank Geoviki
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews as part of our industry-leading trust & safety standards. Read our transparency report to learn more.
Reviewed 5 May 2016

Premise: an experience on Koyasan mount cannot be judged by the same criteria that are used for normal hotels. If you are looking for amenities, large beds, great variety of foods, and all services, this is not the case. If you go to Koya Mount to live with monks, you should expect something very very far away from your habits, and you cannot pretend all the amenities you could expect from a normal 4-star or 5- star western hotel. Just an example: no toilet in room, there are only common restroom and common bath (a typical onsen, separated for men and ladies).

Here you can live a unique experience far away from the world, in an atmosphere of peace and serenity: beautiful outdoor gardens, an authentic Buddhist temple, a traditional japanese style room with typical japanese windows, a low table for the tea, and a couple of futoni (typical japanese bed, to sleep directly on the floor). You can even wear Yukata, typical japanese style dress. You will partecipate at the pray of the morning (6:30 am). The monks will serve you hearty dinner (at 6:00 pm) and breackfast (at 7:00 am), in your room.

And of course, you will eat their food: they are Buddhist and therefore they're vegetarians, so you won't see any meat on your table. I cannot say you if you will love or hate your meals: it's been so far from my usual meal! I tasted everything, with open mind and curiosity, but obviously there were something I liked and something I didn't like. If you are afraid to leave all dishes on the table cause you don't like, and then to be hungry, I suggest to bring some food/snack just in case of need if you are hungry even after dinner. In my experience, there's been something I didn't like, but I wasn't hungry after dinner or breakfast.

Special mention deserve the monks... So kind and gentle people! Of course, they're japanese, so I couldn't expect anything different :-) ! But let's say: they are "japanese squared" :-) and speak good english (rare quality). And they are always at your disposal for any question or curiosity.

So... Why didn't I give 5 stars? Because something can be improved...
1) Ok, I can accept the general structure does not have heating (in your room there will be an electric heater), but I think at least common restroom could be heated.
2) It would be very useful to know what we are eating: I'd have liked some explanations of the dishes on the table
3) Talking about explanations... It's been e great experience to partecipate to the pray in the morning, but it would be greater to have some explanations about the content of the pray and about monks' life

In conclusion, I recommend this place: you will enjoy an experience which in few other parts of the world you will have the pleasure to live. If you are looking for a unique place, in which you can spend some special days living in a totally different way from your habits... This is the right place! It is another world!

Date of stay: April 2016
  • Trip type: Travelled as a couple
    • Sleep Quality
    • Service
4  Thank LoZioNando
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews as part of our industry-leading trust & safety standards. Read our transparency report to learn more.
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