After visiting the Silver Pavilion on snowy New Year’s Eve, we headed across town to the Golden Pavilion, Kinkakuji (金閣寺).
The Golden Pavilion lives up to its name and is actually golden, unlike the silver pavilion. But, the Golden Pavilion is not an original. The first time I visited the pavilion, I marveled at the spectacular temple covered in gold leaf. Then I read the book Temple of the Golden Pavilion by Yukio Mishima, which is a fictional retelling of true events. In 1950, a monk burned down the Golden Pavilion. The current temple is a reconstruction dating from 1955. It’s still a great place to visit, but I was rather disappointed to find out it wasn’t original. I felt like I’d been lied to.