A small basin at the foot of Mt. Hiei-zan is home to the Sanzen-in and Jakko-in temples, and "Oharame." Enjoy beautiful gardens and learn about ancient history.
Ohara is located in the north of Sakyo-ku, in a small basin at the western foot of the Mt. Hiei-zan.
The most famous place in Ohara is Sanzen-in Temple, which is known for its beautiful cherry blossoms, autumn colors and moss. It has two beautiful gardens, called Juheki-en and Yusei-en, that are said to be the best sights in the Rakuhoku area, a northern part of Kyoto. The main temple, Ojo-Gokuraku-in, is famous for its 'funazoko' (boat bottom) ceiling that will make you feel like you are inside an upside-down boat. The bright gold Amida-Nyorai Sanson-zo, the image of a principal Buddha, found there symbolizes paradise.
Another famous temple is Jakko-in. It is a convent where Kenreimon-in Tokuko, a daughter from a powerful clan and later an empress, spent the late years of her life performing memorial rites for her son Emperor Antoku, who had been killed at the age of two after a defeat in a battle over power during a war, and for her clan that had been overthrown in battles in the 12th century.
Ohara is also known for "Oharame," female peddlers who carry brushwood, firewood and flowers on their heads along the streets of Kyoto. They wear a towel on their ornately arranged hair, an indigo blue kimono, a Gosho-zome dyed 'obi' (sash), an apron, white hand covers and gaiters on their legs. This unique costume of Oharame is believed to have already attracted the attention of people in Kyoto around the 12th century, just as it continues to do so today.
From Tokyo :
[Rail] 2h 15 min to Kyoto Station by JR Tokaido Shinkansen Line 'Nozomi, or 2h 45 min by 'Hikari.' 20 min from Kyoto to Tofuku-ji Station by JR Nara Line, and from Tofuku-ji to Demachiyanagi by Keihan Line. 30 min from Damachiyanagi-mae to Ohara by bus.
From Osaka :
[Rail] 28 min to Kyoto Station by JR Tokaido Line (new rapid service).