It’s not just gold that’s shining right now at one of Japan’s most beautiful historical sites.

As the historical and cultural capital of Japan, Kyoto boasts more sightseeing attractions than arguably anywhere else in the country. It’s got so many, in fact, that a visit to the city often involves having to cut a must-see-level destination from your itinerary, simply because there’s not enough time to fit them all in.

But while this sometimes leads travelers to make the painful choice to skip such a wonder as Nijo Castle, Kiyomizu Temple, or the Heian Shrine, hardly anyone bumps Kinkakuji from their schedule, at least if it’s their first time in Kyoto. The Golden Pavilion truly is a one-of-a-kind architectural marvel, and right now it looks even more beautiful than at any time in roughly the past 20 years.

Kinkakuji is always a breathtaking sight, but it’s looking especially dazzling these days thanks to a just-finished four-month restoration project. The main reason for the construction was replacing the roof surfacing, which required craftsman to install roughly 100,000 planks of Japanese Sawara cypress over an area of 320 square meters (3,444 square feet).

The last re-roofing took place in 2002, and the years of exposure to the elements had dulled the color of the shingles. The freshly installed wood has a bright, lustrous hue to it, shining almost as brilliantly as the building’s gold-covered walls when the sun hits.

Speaking of Kinkakuji’s precious-metal accents, while they had the scaffolding set up craftsmen also took the opportunity to resurface the phoenix sculpture perched atop the very tip of the gracefully curving roof. This part of the restoration project involved some 10,000 pieces of gold leaf.

The restoration project officially finished on Monday, and though Kinkakuji’s management did a commendable job creating photo opportunities for visitors even during the construction, it’s nice to see the building back on display, especially when it takes on a special beauty on winter days when it’s surrounded by snow.

Source: NHK News Web
Top image: Wikipedia/Jaycangel (edited by SoraNews24)
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