Motsuji Garden - Pure Land gardens simulate the Buddhist afterlife. The pond at Motsuji is called Oizumi Ga Ike which was laid out according to the rules in Japan's oldest garden manual, the Sakuteiki, on garden design. These principles include elements like a beach, rocky coastline, bridges, mountains, streams and stones protruding from the lake's surface. Its beauty has remained unchanged for eight centuries, blending harmoniously with surrounding nature to form this landscape. Motsuji Garden is one of the few remaining pure land gardens that still exist in Japan. Pure land gardens were a popular garden style during the Heian Period, designed to recreate the Buddhist concept of the pure land or Buddhist paradise. Like all pure land gardens, Motsuji's garden is centered around a large pond. At the height of its glory Motsu-ji had 40 pagodas and 500 monasteries. The temple complex burned in 1226 and most of it was never rebuilt. Motsuji Garden is a UNESCO World Heritage Site.