Kinkakuji

Few visitors to Japan choose to bypass the famous Golden Pavilion when visiting Kyoto. Formally known as Rokuon-ji, the top two floors of this Zen temple are covered in gold leaf, and reflects brightly in the pond that it is surrounded on by three sides.  While it is not possible to enter the temple, you can take a leisurely stroll around the pond and gardens, and glimpse the statues sitting on the first floor from afar. Before heading out, be sure to visit the old tea house for some tea and sweets, perfect after a long walk.