History / Culture / Tour Spots in Japan

  • Fushimi Inari Taisha
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    4.5
    24522 Reviews
    Travel / Tourism
    Kyoto Kyoutoshi Fushimi-ku Fukakusa Yabunouchi cho 68
    This shrine in Fushimi Ward, Kyoto City, is the head of all Inari Shrines in Japan, which total to around 30,000 shrines. The shrine is particularly famous for its vermillion lacquered Torii gate tunnels, as well as to parishioners visiting the god for business, harvest, and fortune. Many of the buildings on the grounds are also painted with brilliant vermillion lacquer including the front shrine, main shrine, and tower gate, which has been designated an Important Cultural Properties of Japan. The torii gate corridor, said to consist of several thousand to 10,000 torii gates, twists and turns making it quite the spectacle. Beyond that is the rear shrine as well as the entrance to Mt. Inari-san which is dotted with countless small burial mounds. It is one of the most famous spots in the Kansai region to visit for the annual New Year Shrine Visit and draws huge numbers of visitors every year.

    An amazing shrine to visit in Kyoto, must see. Plenty of shops on the way to the shrine if youd like to pick up a souvenir. Next time, I hope to go through more of the gates.

  • Osaka Castle
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    4.0
    7912 Reviews
    Travel / Tourism
    Osaka Osakashi Chuou-ku Osakajou 1-1
    Osaka Castle was built by the Imperial Regent Toyotomi Hideyoshi between 1583 and 1598. The castle was built on a magnificent scale, but was destroyed just 17 years later after the death of Toyotomi Hideyoshi and the destruction of the Toyotomi clan in the Siege of Osaka in 1615. Thereafter, the castle was rebuilt by the Tokugawa shogunate under the command of Todo Takatora but was once again lost due to a fire caused by a lightning strike. The current castle tower is the third generation to stand here and was completed in 1931 through donations from local citizens. The interior of the castle is a history museum and visitors can enjoy information about the history of Osaka Castle and dioramas. The castle was registered as a national Tangible Cultural Property in 1997.

    Great castle of the war era, Japan. If you are a fan of samurai and ninja. You probably are very familiar with the invincible castle.

  • Nijojo Castle
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    4.5
    6983 Reviews
    Travel / Tourism
    Kyoto City Kyoto City Nakagyo-ku Nijyotoru Horikawa Western Nishi Nijo Castle Town 541
    This fortification was built in 1603 to lodge Tokugawa Ieyasu when he travelled to the capital after his victory at the Battle of Sekigahara. Later, the site was significantly renovated by the third shogun, Tokugawa Iemitsu, resulting in its present form. In addition to the entire grounds being a nationally designated Historic Site, the site is dotted with numerous historically valuable structures and beautiful sights, including the Ninomaru Palace, the outer citadel palace (a National Treasure), Honmaru Palace, the inner citadel palace (an Important Cultural Property), and Ninomaru Garden, the outer citadel palace garden (a Special Place of Scenic Beauty).

    This is a UNESCO world heritage site. As of June 2022, the Honmaru-Goten Palace is closed for major restoration/renovation. The various gardens inside the castle walls are all accessible and...

  • Tōdai-ji
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    4.5
    5656 Reviews
    Travel / Tourism
    Nara Pref. Narashi Zoushichou 406-1
    "Located in Nara City, as the head temple of the Kegon sect of Buddhism. The principal image is Vairocana Buddha, the symbol of Nara as the ""Great Buddha of Nara"". In 743, Emperor Shomu issued his imperial edict for the erection of the Great Buddha Image, and with the cooperation of many people, it was constructed in the hope that all would be happy. The temple grounds are dotted with the national treasures such as Nandai-mon (Great South Gate), Daibutsu-den (Great Buddha Hall), Bell Tower, and Hokke-do (Lotus Hall, Sangatsu-do). It is also known worldwide as one of Japan's most popular tourist spots and attracts many foreign tourists."

    Todaiji was once one of Japan’s Seven Great Temples and houses the world’s largest bronze Buddha. As one of the main sites of interest in Nara, the Temple was originally built in 752 and is a UNESCO...

  • Jisho-ji Temple (Ginkaku-ji Temple)
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    4.5
    4610 Reviews
    Travel / Tourism
    Kyoto Kyoutoshi Sakyou-ku Ginkakujichou 2
    A mountain retreat modeled after the Kinkaku-ji Temple (Gold Pavillion Temple) built by Ashikaga Yoshimitsu, grandfather of the eighth Muromachi shogun Ashikaga Yoshimasa, in 1482. After Yoshimasa’s death, the villa was turned into a Rinzai Shokoku-ji school Zen Buddhist temple and, based on Yoshimasa’s posthumous name, the temple was named the Jishoji Temple. The Kannon Hall, commonly known as the Ginkaku (Silver Pavillion), is simple and elegant in its design; the Togu-do hall is the oldest extant example of ancient Japanese shoin-zukuri architecture and is designated a National Treasure.

    Ginkakuji Temple was one of many I saw while touring around Kyoto. I was here in September and had the temple to myself. There is an entrance fee for this temple but its well worth a visit. I loved...

  • Nikko Toshogu Shrine
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    4.5
    3341 Reviews
    Travel / Tourism
    Tochigi Pref. Nikkoushi Sannai 2301
    A shrine located in Sannai, Nikko City. It was founded in 1617 as a shrine dedicated to the Tosho Daigongen (Tokugawa Ieyasu). There are many buildings including eight National Treasures and 34 Important Cultural Properties in the shrine grounds as well as the beautifully adorned and richly colored carvings of the Three Wise Monkeys—Mizaru, Iwazaru and Kikazaru (see no evil, speak no evil and hear no evil)—and the Nemuri-neko (sleepy cat) attributed to Hidari Jingoro. Nikko Toshogu is also registered as a World Heritage Site as one of the Shrines and Temples of Nikko.

    Toshogu Shrine is a magnificent memorial to Tokugawa Ieyasu, the founder of the Tokugawa Shogunate, which ruled Japan for over 250 years. The lavishly decorated shrine complex consists of more than a...

  • Kotoku-in Temple (Kamakura Daibutsu)
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    4.5
    3033 Reviews
    Travel / Tourism
    Kanagawa Pref. Kamakurashi Hase 4-2-28
    A Pure Land Buddhist temple founded by the great priest Honen. The 11.3 meter tall, 121 ton giant copper Buddha statue known as the Kamakura Daibutsu, a National Treasure, is the temple’s principal object of worship and depicts a seated Amitabha. The original daibutsu was made of wood and was destroyed by a typhoon. The copper form of the current statue first began to be cast in 1252. This figure, too, was damaged by typhoons and earthquakes but was repaired each time, leading to its current excellent condition. The interior of the statue can be viewed and from here visitors can see evidence of the repairs that have been made.

    Been there with friends last week.not so far from the station best place to spend your time with friends and also with family as well .located on the peaceful environment.you can get there souvenirs...

  • Ghibli Museum, Mitaka
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    4.5
    1904 Reviews
    Leisure / Hobbies
    Tokyo Mitakashi Shimorenjaku 1-1-83 Metropolitan Inokashira Park In Saiten
    This is an animation art museum managed by Studio Ghibli's Hayao Miyazaki with a motto of “Let's get lost together.” In addition to displaying materials and storyboards of past Ghibli works, the museum always features various sections that will expand one's perception of animation such as the replicated animation studio and the screenings of short animated films made just for the museum. With a nostalgic building and a route that blends in greenery, this is a place that both adults and children can enjoy just as they please. Entry to the museum is only by reservation and the closest station is Mitaka Station.

    They wouldn’t let me mark earlier, but I actually went in fall of 2017. No photography allowed, which almost made the experience more special. There’s Ghibli themed food, and inside looks into the...

  • Naritasan Shinshoji Temple
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    4.5
    2159 Reviews
    Travel / Tourism
    Chiba Pref. Naritashi Narita 1
    Naritasan Shinshoji Temple is a lead temple in the Chisan school of Shingon located in Narita, Chiba Prefecture. In order to suppress a revolt by Tairano Masakado which broke out in the Heian period, it began with the fact that Kobo Daishi was spiritually enlightened by the high priest Kancho as Acala was enshrined and became the principal image of worship at the temple. Many well-known figures had strong faith including such figures as Minamotono Yoritomo, Mito Mitsukuni and Ichikawa Danjuro, and Narita Fudo prompted many commoners to have faith. On the grounds of the temple, there are very big gardens maintained which cover an area of approximately 3.5 times that of Tokyo Dome, and you can see seasonal plants in the garden.

    This is my third visit to Shinshouji. This time I took my wife for the first time. It would be much help and enjoyable if you can hire (for free) a guide to take you around the area. The history and...

  • Tenryu-ji Temple
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    4.5
    1969 Reviews
    Travel / Tourism
    Kyoto Kyoutoshi Ukyou-ku Sagatenryujisusukinobabachou 68
    The head temple of Rinzai Tenryuji Buddhsim. The temple is one of the foremost sightseeing locations in the Saga Arashiyama area. The temple was founded in 1339 by Ashikaga Takauji to memorialize Emperor Go-Daigo. The temple was founded as the first of the five Kyoto Gozan premier temples and the spacious grounds encompassed over 150 sub-temples, but these were all lost in a series of later fires. The various temple buildings standing today were reconstructed in the Meiji period; the abbot’s chamber enshrines a seated figure of Gautama Buddha created in the Fujiwara period. The temple’s circular garden, built around a central pond, is a designated Historic Site and Special Place of Scenic Beauty and makes use of Mt. Arashiyama and Mt. Kameyama in the background. The garden looks the same as it did approximately 700 years ago when it was first created by Muso Kokushi.

    This temple is at the end of the bamboo forest and is just stunning. The pond and garden around it is a great picture opportunity. Fortunately not many people were there when we went on our trip.

  • Tokyo Big Sight (Tokyo International Exhibition Center)
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    3.5
    681 Reviews
    Travel / Tourism
    Tokyo Koutou-ku Ariake 3-11-1
    Located in the Ariake district of Tokyo's Koto City, this is Japan's largest convention center. It opened in 1996 and is used for various trade fairs and exhibitions throughout the year including business as well as cultural events. It is famous for hosting the Tokyo Motor Show and the Comic Market. The interior is mainly divided up into the Conference Tower, East Hall, East New Exhibition Hall, West Hall and Restaurant Avenue.

    Currently visiting this wonderful structure for a lengthy work assignment and Im blown away by how large, impressive and well-run it is.

  • Zojoji Temple
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    4.0
    2163 Reviews
    Travel / Tourism
    Tokyo Minato-ku Shibakouen 4-7-35
    This temple that belongs to the Jodo sect is located in Shiba Park in Tokyo’s Minato City and is situated close to the base of Tokyo Tower. Zojoji Temple was founded by the monk Yuyo Shoso shonin in 1393 as an orthodox and fundamental nembutsu seminary for the Jodo sect. It used to be a large-scale temple with more than 120 buildings and more than 100 dormitories, and structures such as the Important Cultural Property Sangedatsumon (Three Gates of Liberation) that escaped damage from the war and the reconstructed main hall give an indication of the temple’s former glory. Tokyo Tower can be seen in the background behind the main hall, making this a popular photo spot. Inside the temple is the mausoleum of the Tokugawa family which contains six of the 15 Tokugawa shoguns.

    Zojoji Temple is the head temple of the Jodo sect of Japanese Buddhism in the Kanto Region. Standing next to Tokyo Tower, the temple grounds consist of some impressive structures as well as a...

  • Nanzen-ji Zen Temple
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    4.5
    2178 Reviews
    Travel / Tourism
    Kyoto Kyoutoshi Sakyou-ku Nanzenjifukuchichou
    The head temple of the Rinzai school of Zen Buddhism, located in Sakyo Ward, Kyoto City. The temple was founded by the priest Mukan Fumon as the Zenrin-ji-dono, the imperial villa of Emperor Kameyama in 1291. The temple’s standing is high; it is considered above the five most important Rinzai temples in both Kyoto and Kamakura. Its triple gate is considered one of the three most impressive temple gates in Kyoto and is also famous as the setting of a scene in the kabuki play Sanmon gosan no kiri, in which the character of Ichikawa Goemon utters the well-known line, “How beautiful, how beautiful!” The temple houses numerous Important Cultural Properties, such as famed painter Kano Tan’yu’s screen paining The Tiger of Mizunomi. The grounds contain an abbot’s residence which is a National Treasure and was moved here from the former imperial palace of Fushimi Castle. The temple’s garden is a dry landscape garden representative of the early Edo period style.

    came to beloved kyoto to visit our wonderful friend after hiking the kumano kodo trail. our 6th visit to japan, our third exploration of kyoto. lucky us to have our japanese friend who was raised in...

  • Atsuta Jingu (Atsuta Shrine)
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    4.0
    1752 Reviews
    Travel / Tourism
    Aichi Pref. Nagoyashi Atsuta-ku Jingu 1-1-1
    This shrine located in Nagoya City’s Atsuta Ward has been known familiarly as “Atsuta Sama” since long ago. Reported to have been established in 113, it is revered as a Great Shrine ranking second only to Ise Jingu Shrine. The shrine is famous as a place that enshrines the sacred sword Kusanagi-no-tsurugi, one of the three sacred treasures that symbolize the Imperial throne. The approximately 190,000-square meter premises are thick with kusunoki (camphor trees) that have been living for more than one thousand years, and are scattered with numerous setsumatsu-sha (smaller shrines managed under the shrine). There are numerous events and festivals held at the shrine including Hatsu Ebisu on January 5, and it is constantly bustling with visitors for Shichi-Go-San (shrine visit by children aged 7, 5 and 3), omiya-mairi (the first shrine visits by babies) and even Hatsu Mode (the first shrine visit of New Year).

    Early morning arrived, the shrine is really clean, quite and peace. Has parking places nearly, even has free parkings nearby..

  • Rokuon-ji Temple (Kinkaku-ji Temple)
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    4.0
    29 Reviews
    Travel / Tourism
    Kyoto Kyoutoshi Kita-ku Kinkakujichou 1
    This temple began when third generation shogun of the Muromachi shogunate Ashikaga Yoshimitsu inherited the Saionji family's mountain villa and called the villa “Kitayamadono.” After his death it was changed into a Zen temple named “Rokuonji.” The reliquary hall is a three-story building shining beautifully in gold and looks pretty reflected in the Kyokoike (mirror pond). This brilliant architecture was a symbol of Kitayama culture but burned down in a 1950 fire, then was rebuilt in 1955. In 1994 it was designated a UNESCO World Heritage Site.

    It was nice to sit quietly and have a bowl of matcha tea and a sweet while finishing our visit at kinkaku-ji. It wasnt busy at all despite the huge crowds at the temple and the tea was lovely.

  • Zenkoji Temple
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    4.5
    1955 Reviews
    Travel / Tourism
    Nagano Pref. Naganoshi Naganomotoyoshichou 491-b
    "Located in Nagano City, this temple does not belong to any sect. Any sect is free to worship here, which has received veneration for having Japan's oldest Ikko Sanson Amida Nyorai as the main deity. During the Edo period, it was said that ""once in your life, visit Zenkoji Temple,"" The ""oasaji"" is performed every day during the sunrise. If you purchase a ticket for the inner sanctum, you can worship up close. The ""zenritsu honzon"" is performed once every seven years. About 15 minutes by bus from JR Nagano Station."

    長野を代表する寺院の一つ。年間を通して国内外から多くの参拝客・観光客が訪れる。にもかかわらず境内は過度な観光地化はされておらず、国籍や年齢問わずほとんどの参拝客・観光客は比較的静かに参拝している。安置されている仏像は勿論のこと、多くの建物自体が国宝もしくは重要文化財に指定されている。 基本的に境内は無料で利用できるが、一部の建物内(本堂、経蔵、山門等)は入場料金が必要。各建物や安置されている仏像の...

  • Kiyomizu-dera Temple
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    4.0
    33 Reviews
    Travel / Tourism
    Kyoto Kyoutoshi Higashiyama-ku Kiyomizu 1-294
    A famous Buddhist temple located in Higashiyama Ward in Kyoto City, Kyoto Prefecture. The temple is said to have been started when the priest Enchin enshrined a thousand-armed statue of Kannon above the Otowa Waterfall in 778. The main temple nave enshrines a standing figure of an eleven-faced Kannon and is built in the elegant Shinden-zukuri style. The Kiyomizu Stage jutting out over the Cliffside offers a sweeping view of the streets of Kyoto and blooming cherry trees, verdant plant life, or autumn foliage depending on the season, making it a popular photo spot. The three channeled Otowa Waterfall is said to provide benefits such as long life and people line up to drink its waters. Bustling with students on a school excursion as well as tourists both domestic and international, the Kiyomizu-dera Temple is one of Kyoto’s most popular tourist sites.

    Its a steep walk going up the Kiyomizu dera main stage so make sure to have lots of energy. But the view is extremely picturesque especially when it snows

  • Kasuga Taisha Shrine
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    4.5
    1772 Reviews
    Travel / Tourism
    Nara Pref. Narashi Kasuganochou 160
    This is a Shinto shrine located in Nara City. Kasuga Taisha Shrine is the grand head shrine of approximately 1,000 Kasuga shrines nationwide. The origins to the shrine lie in the early days of the Nara period, when Takemikazuchi-no-mikoto from Kashima-jingu Shrine was enshrined at Mt. Mikasa. The main shrine of the Kasuga structure which is a National Treasure has four buildings lined up, and in addition to the majestic and splendid south Gate and middle gate, there are many things such as fine and industrial art objects which have been designated as Important Cultural Properties. The Bantoro Festival (Lantern Festival) event is held on the day of Setsubun (Bean throwing night) and on the 14th and 15th of August when around 3,000 stone lanterns and hanging lanterns are lit with fire, and many worshipers come to look at this magical sight.

    Kasuga Taisha is more than a shrine, it’s a mysterious world that involves forest, pathways, lanterns, and semi-wild deer. Founded in 768, Kasuga Taisha is a part of the Nara-Koen Park and is...

  • Byodoin
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    4.5
    1634 Reviews
    Travel / Tourism
    Kyoto Ujishi Uji Renge 116
    A Buddhist temple located in Uji City, Kyoto Prefecture that was founded in 1052 when Fujiwara no Michinaga, the father of Fujiwara no Yorimichi, turned a villa he had inherited into a temple. Due to the pessimism of the time which believed the world was coming to an end, Pure Land Buddhism grew in popularity, and the temple’s hall was designed to recreate the Western Paradise, a key aspect of the faith. The luxurious hall enshrines a seated figure of Amitabha created by the Buddhist sculptor Jocho. Most of the original temple excluding the main hall, Kannon hall, and bell tower were destroyed by fire. In the Byodoin Museum Hoshokan, however, visitors can view a Chinese Phoenix depicted on the ceiling and temple bell (National Treasures) as well as 26 of the 52 floating bodhisattva figures suspended from the ceiling of the main hall.

    The temple was designated to UNESCO World Heritage Site. The most famous building in the temple, the Phoenix Hall which hold the Amida Buddha statue and two statues of phoenix on the roof. The hall...

  • Hiroshima Castle
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    4.0
    1980 Reviews
    Travel / Tourism
    Hiroshima Pref. Hiroshimashinakaku Motomachi 21-1
    Hiroshima Castle, which was built by Mori Terumoto, one member of Toyotomi Hideyoshi’s Council of Five Elders, is also known by another name, Carp Castle, and is counted as one of Japan’s three greatest flatland castles. The main keep which was constructed in 1598 was designated a National Treasure in 1931, but was destroyed by the atomic bombing. The exterior was restored in 1958 with a ferro-concrete structure. In 1989, as the castle welcomed 400 years of history, the ni-no-maru was restored, the moat was cleaned, and the interior was remodeled, and now it is used as a history museum with the theme of samurai culture.

    Hiroshima Castle is huge and very grand. It may look old on the outside because of its wooden facade, but it is very much well-maintained on the inside.

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