Located close to Kyoto station are two temples of the Jodo Shin sect, Nishi Honganji and Higashi Honganji, both imposing examples of Buddhist architecture. The Gion Corner near Shijo-Kawaramachi is an excellent place to view traditional arts and traditional theater. Rows of attractively designed old-style restaurants add to the distinctly refined atmosphere. In the Higashiyama area, Sanjusangendo Temple is noted for its 1,001 gilded wooden statues of Kannon, the Goddess of Mercy. Kiyomizu Temple is famous for its wide wooden veranda jutting out over an beautiful valley that extends to a panoramic view of the city. Ginkakuji Temple, or the Silver Pavilion, is renowned both for its exquisite architecture and the beauty of its understated landscape gardens. In the northern part of the city are the kamo shrines, where the Aoi festival is held in May of each year. The Katsura Imperial Villa, located in western Kyoto, is considered to be one of the finest examples of traditional Japanese architecture and garden landscaping. The Shugakuin Imperial Villa was built in the 17th century by the Tokugawa shogunate as a retreat for Emperor Go-Mizunoo. The Arashiyama district, only 20 min. by train from central Kyoto, is dotted with many celebrated temples and shops. The area can be easily enjoyed on foot or bicycle, offering a superb walking experience especially on those fine weather days. Western Kyoto contains musts for the tourist – Kinkakuji and Ryoanji temples. The brilliant Kinkakuji, the three-story Golden Pavilion, is in excellent contrast to Ryoanji famed for its stone garden which is simplicity itself designed with only rocks and white sand. The natural beauty of Hozukyo gorge, the Sagano district, and the hills of Takao also attracts visitors. Kyoto is the national center for the tea ceremony and flower arrangement and is the birth place of No, kyogen, kabuki and other traditional performing arts.