The Golden Temple
Kinkaku-ji, Kyoto Japan.
Sitting under the cool shade of a coloured Japanese Maple is the best place to view this Golden Temple in Kyoto. As you take in the temple your eyes wander to the lake which offers a series of tiny island's populated with Japanese Garden Tree's pruned like puffy clouds. I was reminded of a scene from Alice in Wonderland and the garden of the Queen of hearts... "Off with her head!" :-)
The Zen Buddhist temple, Kinkaku-ji, has fallen to attacks during war times in japan and its history dates back to 1397 ! As you wander caretakers quietly go about their business sweeping up leaves or shaping bushes and the amount of individual attention given to all aspects of the garden is something I love about Japanese culture. In a world livid with technology their devotion to nature and spiritual enlightenment is a very attractive quality. It isn't just in these public gardens that you see this kind of attention to detail, but also in nearly every house and apartment across Japan :-)