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Asakusa Kannon is the Greatest Buddhist Temple in Tokyo and a Prime Attraction

Asakusa is part of Tokyo‘s downtown Taito district finest identified for its many temples, notably Sensoji.

Sensoji, also referred to as Asakusa Kannon, is Tokyo’s largest Buddhist temple and a main attraction for Japanese and foreigners alike. Take the Sensoji exit of the subway and comply with the crowds.

Yearly, many vacationers from Japan and world wide go to Sensoji Temple. Within the speedy neighborhood of the temple, there are various conventional retailers and eating places providing genuine Japanese meals comparable to handmade noodles, sushi and tempura.

Take into account to go to the temple at night time, till 23:00 it’s fantastically lit.

Sensoji Temple in Asakusa, Tokyo, Japan.
Sensoji Temple in Asakusa, Tokyo, Japan.

What to find out about Sensoji

Admission to the temple grounds and websites is usually free. Nevertheless, sure areas have totally different opening and shutting occasions.

Kaminarimon – Thunder Gate

Up first is the Kaminarimon or “Thunder Gate“, that includes a much-photographed big lantern and statues of guardian gods Raijin (god of thunder) and Fujin (god of wind). First inbuilt 942, the gate has been destroyed quite a few occasions and the present incarnation dates to solely 1950.

The gate has a large lantern and 4 guards within the archway. The gate is a vital image of Asakusa and all of Tokyo.
The Nakamise buying arcade main as much as the temple begins after the gate (see under).

Nakamise – Purchasing and Memento Avenue

Behind the Kaminarimon is the full of life Nakamise Avenue, a buying mile filled with memento retailers and colourful hustle and bustle. These retailers are an vital a part of the historic custom of promoting to pilgrims on their option to Sensoji Temple.

It’s lined with small retailers promoting souvenirs comparable to followers, ukiyo-e (woodblock prints), kimonos, and Buddhist scrolls. You too can discover conventional Japanese sweets, in addition to Star Wars toys, T-shirts, and smartphone and iPad circumstances. For hundreds of years, it has been a well-liked place to purchase genuine Japanese souvenirs comparable to yukata garments, followers or native sweets to take house.

At dusk, this avenue is reworked right into a sea of lights that enchants guests.

Shops at the Sensoji temple in Tokyo, Japan.
Outlets on the Sensoji temple in Tokyo, Japan.

Hozomon

On the finish of the arcade is the principle gate Hozomon, notable for a large straw sandal (waraji) hung up on one facet. The 2 gigantic straw sandals (waraji) weighing a formidable 400-500 kg. These are donated by town of Maruyama each 10 years and had been final renewed in 2018.

The Hozomon Gate homes two guardians adorned with three imposing lanterns. The central lantern in vivid purple weighs greater than 400 kg, whereas the opposite two are manufactured from copper and weigh about 1000 kg every!

Gojonoto – 5-Story Pagoda

Proper subsequent to the Hozomon Gate and to the west is the attractive five-story pagoda Gojonoto, which has a formidable size of over 53 meters. Inside you possibly can admire creative photos of Buddha and treasured relics. The highest of the pagoda symbolically represents the sacred grave of the Buddha, seemingly containing a few of the ashes of the Buddha. Sadly, it isn’t potential to discover this majestic pagoda from the within.

Hondo (Major Corridor)

The principle corridor of the Hondo constructing is the guts of the place. It has been destroyed by fireplace a number of occasions over time, most not too long ago throughout an air raid in World Struggle II. In entrance of the principle constructing are small buildings with drawers the place you possibly can have your fortune advised in English and Japanese utilizing omikuji slips.

Asakusa-Jinja

To the suitable of the principle corridor is Asakusa-jinja, a small Shinto shrine. Japanese weddings are sometimes held right here on weekends. The shrine is devoted to the reminiscence of three males: two brothers and a village headman who had been instrumental within the building of Sensoji Temple. Apparently, three fishing nets are the image of this shrine – all three males had been fishermen.

Nitenmon

Standing subsequent to the shrine, you possibly can see the Nitenmon Gate. It was inbuilt 1618 and is the oldest constructing on the grounds of Sensoji Temple. This spectacular gate typically attracts many vacationers, particularly from China, so it might probably get fairly crowded at peak occasions.

Kannondo

The perennially busy Kannondo (Kannon Corridor) is behind the gate, with a gentle stream of worshippers wafting incense over themselves and trooping up the steps to hope and donate. In response to legend, the corridor was initially inbuilt 628 to accommodate a statue of Kannon, the Goddess of Mercy, fished out of the Sumida River by two brothers.

Gate at Sensoji Temple in Asakusa, Tokyo, Japan.
Gate at Sensoji Temple in Asakusa, Tokyo, Japan.

Historical past of the Sensoji Temple

The temple is devoted to the bodhisattva Kannon (Avalokitesvara). In response to legend, a statue of Kannon was found within the Sumida River in 628 AD by brothers Hinokuma Hamanari and Hinokuma Takenari, two fishermen. Their village chief, Hajino Nakamoto, acknowledged the sacredness of this statue and had it transformed right into a small temple in his personal home in Asakusa in order that the villagers might worship the Kannon.

In 645 AD, very early in the course of the reign of the Tokugawa shogunate, the primary temple was based – making it the oldest temple in Tokyo anyplace! At the moment, the shogun Tokugawa Ieyasu appointed Senso-ji because the protecting temple of his clan. The Nishinomiya Inari Shrine can also be positioned on the grounds of Senso-ji; a torii solemnly marks the doorway to the sacred grounds of this shrine.

A bronze plaque on this archway names the individuals who contributed to the development of this torii, which was inbuilt 1727 (Kyoho 12, month 11). In the course of the Second World Struggle, bombs fell on this temple and destroyed it fully – however later it was rebuilt.

Right now it serves as a logo of recent life and peace inside the Japanese inhabitants. Within the courtyard of the temple rises a tree, which was hit by a bomb; nonetheless, it continued to develop and has saved its roots within the outdated trunk.

Enjoyable Truth

The temple has an enchanting historical past. It’s stated that two fishermen found a golden picture of the merciful, nirvana-reaching Kannon in what’s now the Sumida River.

Regardless of a number of makes an attempt to return the statue to the water, it saved coming again to them. Due to its recognition as Kannon, it was lastly delivered to the temple.

Though Sensoji Temple was based in 628, the present crimson constructing is way more trendy and was constructed after it was destroyed throughout World Struggle II.

Further ideas

Kimono Expertise

Anticipate curious and seems to be. The expertise is a door opener to interacting with the locals and it’s actually loads of enjoyable!

Hire a kimono right here and discover Asakusa the normal method.

Sit up for exploring Asakusa whereas carrying a ravishing conventional Japanese kimono from Kimono Miyabi. At Kimono Miyabi, you can see a wide range of kimono units to select from to make your expertise as enjoyable as potential.

The educated workers at Kimono Miyabi might be completely happy to help you to find the right outfit.

Discover Tokyo’s highlights in a non-public tour

Not feeling like staying lengthy in Tokyo, the capital of Japan and the world’s most populous metropolis?
Then you must search for a option to see all the highest sights without delay!

This nice tour does simply that.

First, you’ll go to the world-famous Asakusa district, the place you’ll see the colourful Senso-ji Temple and stroll alongside the spectacular Kaminari-mon Gate and Nakamise Avenue.

Then head to Sumida Park on the banks of the Sumida River – an ideal place to view the cherry blossoms in spring or the breathtaking fireworks in summer time.

After a scrumptious lunch, you’ll cross considered one of Japan’s most well-known intersections – Shibuya Crossing.

Different highlights of this tour embrace Hachiko, Takeshita Avenue and the Omotesando Meiji Shrine.

With this tour you possibly can simply discover each the outdated and trendy sides of Tokyo!

Value: €112 per group (1-8 individuals)
Begin: 09:30
Ends: 16:30
Good to know: This tour is Muslim and vegetarian vacationers pleasant. In the course of the tour, the group will journey on public transport

The tour consists of:

  • Skilled Information
  • English talking information
  • Taxes
  • Operator insurance coverage
  • Prepare tour ticket
  • The information will meet you on the resort with out a automotive (strolling tour)
Private tour through Tokyo, Japan
Non-public tour by means of Tokyo, Japan

  • Travel Dudes

    I am positive you’ve got had related experiences I had while touring. You are in a sure place and a fellow traveler, or an area, tip you off on a little-known seashore, bar or lodging. Nice journey ideas from different vacationers or locals all the time add one thing particular to our travels. That was the inspiration for Journey Dudes.

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