Ginkaku-ji or the Silver Pavilion is one of the most underrated tourist spots in Kyoto. While it may visually pale in comparison to the great Kinkaku-ji or Golden Pavilion, I believe it’s still worth checking out due to its being a good example of a structure influenced by Higashiyama culture. Higashiyama culture is mostly based on Zen aesthetics and wabi-sabi, the concept of beauty in simplicity. On the other end of the spectrum is Kinkaku-ji, an example of the more flamboyant Kitayama culture. Perhaps it’s a matter of taste when I say I’m warmer towards Ginkaku-ji because of its understated elegance. I really like the sand garden too!