History and museums
Shōren-in (青蓮院) is a Buddhist temple in Kyoto, Japan. Also known as the Awata Palace, it was built in the late 13th century. Shinran Shonin, the founder of the Jodo Shinshu pure land sect, was ordained a monk at Shōren-in at the age of nine.
Shōren-in was formerly the temple of the imperial abbot of the Tendai headquarters on Mount Hiei; the abbot was required to be chosen from the imperial family or high court aristocracy. After the Great Kyoto Fire of 1788, it was used as a temporary imperial palace. The main hall was rebuilt in 1895.
The temple complex contains a garden with massive eight-hundred-year-old camphor trees (kusunoki), and a pond filled with large stones and fed by a small waterfall.