Explore Japan's essential sites and hidden gems
Todai-ji, the temple to the great Buddha of Nara
The Todai-ji is an important Buddhist temple located in the heart of the city of Nara, in Kansai.
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Let yourself be told the story of Join Rin, a confectioner of Chinese origin who arrived in Nara in 1349 and whose destiny was completely changed thanks to the extraordinary powers of his manjû
Asuka was the capital of the country in the Yamato period, when Japan first discovered writing and Buddhism, whose introduction into Japan led to a clash between the great feudal clans.
Built at the end of the 8th century in Uda, in the north of Nara prefecture, the Muro-ji is home to the smallest 5-storey pagoda in Japan.
Nestled at altitude, in the heart of the Kii peninsula, in the south of Nara prefecture, the Tamaki-jinja sanctuary is part of a site of more than 500 hectares classified as a UNESCO World Heritage
Tanzan Shrine, located in the mountains bordering the historic town of Sakurai, east of Asuka in Nara Prefecture, is famous for its beauty and autumn foliage.
Sumo Shrine Sakurai
Sumo Shrine is an ancient shrine that is claimed to be the birthplace of sumo in Japan after the first bout between Nomi no Sukune and Taima no Kuehaya.
Kashihara Jingu (Kashihara Shrine) dates from 1889 and enshrines the mythical emperor Jinmu, the first emperor of japan.
Tachibanadera Temple, in the Asuka district of Nara Prefecture, is said to be the birthplace of Prince Shotoku Taishi in 572.
Hasedera Temple Nara
Hasedera Temple is located on a wooded hillside overlooking the valley of the Hase River in Sakurai city in the center of Nara Prefecture.
Asukadera Temple in Nara Prefecture is the oldest large scale temple in Japan and contains the country's oldest bronze statue.
Nigatsudo & Sangatsudo Temples
Nigatsudo & Sangatsudo Temples are both sub-temples of Todaiji in Nara; Nigatsudo is the venue of the ancient Omizutori ceremony, while Sangatsudo holds many important Buddhist statues.
Meoto Daikokusha Kasuga Taisha Nara
Meoto Daikokusha 夫婦大国社 is a sub-shrine of Kasuga Taisha (Kasuga Grand Shrine) in Nara. Meoto (夫婦) translates as husband and wife or married couple.
Horinji Temple Nara
Horinji Temple in Nara is believed to have been built by Shotoku Taishi's oldest son to pray for his health.
Chuguji Temple, a nunnery, next door to Horyuji Temple in Nara, contains two National Treasures: a sitting image of Buddha and an historic, embroidered mandala.
Saidaiji Temple (西大寺) in Nara was one of the original Seven Great Temples of Nara and is the headquarters of the Shingon Risshu sect of Japanese Buddhism.
Yakushiji Temple in Nara was founded in 680 by the Emperor Tenmu and is a UNESCO World Heritage Site known for its ancient East Pagoda.
Toshodaiji Temple Nara
Toshodaiji Temple, in Nara, was founded in 759 by the Chinese monk, Ganjin, and is a UNESCO World Heritage Listed site.
Kairyuoji Temple in Nara dates from 731 and served as a guardian temple of the north east where evil was thought to originate.
Hokkeji Temple in Nara was converted into a nunnery in 782 by the Empress Komyo (701-760) on the grounds of the residence of her father, Fujiwara Fubito.
Kaidan-in, in Nara, in the grounds of Todaiji Temple, was the original ordination hall for priests in Japan established by Ganjin in 754.
Gangojii Temple in the Naramachi district of Nara can lay claim to being one of the most ancient temples in Japan.
Horyuji Temple Nara
Horyuji Temple in Nara, a UNESCO World Heritage Site, is home to some of the world's oldest surviving wooden buildings including a Five-Story Pagoda.
Symbol of the reforms initiated by Emperor Shomu (699-756), a devout Buddhist, Toshodaiji figures amongst the great monasteries of the former imperial capital.
The tutelary temple of the powerful Fujiwara family is considered one of the finest museums of sacred Japanese sculpture from the seventh to the thirteenth century. Its name: Kofukuji.
Nara's Horyuji, located in Ikaruga, is a vast place of worship amid the pine trees, and houses the oldest recorded wooden buildings in the world. It remains the oldest temple in Japan!
West of Nara Park and Kofukuji and close to Todaiji Temple and Wakakusayama, Kasuga Taisha and the nearby Kasugayama Primeval Forest are designated as a joint UNESCO World Heritage Site.
Muroji Temple Nara
Muroji Temple. Read about the history of Muroji Temple in Nara Prefecture, a treasure trove of religious and political tradition.
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