SENSOJI TEMPLE

Sensoji Temple Guide: Sensoji Temple pictures, Sensoji Temple map and Sensoji Temple description.

Sensoji Temple (金龍山浅草寺, Kinryū-zan Sensōji) is an ancient Buddhist temple located in Asakusa, Taitō Ward, Tokyo. Sensoji Temple is sometimes referred to as Asakusa Temple. Sensoji Temple is Tokyo's oldest, and one of its most significant, temples. Formerly associated with the Tendai sect, Sensoji Temple became independent after World War II. Adjacent to Sensoji Temple is a Shinto shrine, the Asakusa Jinja.

Sensoji Temple
Sensoji Temple

Sensoji Temple is the focus of Tokyo's largest and most popular matsuri (Shinto festival). The festival takes place over 3�4 days in late spring, and sees the surrounding streets closed to traffic from dawn until late evening.

Hozomon Gate Sensoji Temple

Hozomon Gate contains the very famous and massive red paper lantern. Hozomon Gate is the gateway to the Sensoji Temple.

Hozomon Gate Sensoji Temple
Hozomon Gate Sensoji Temple

Kaminari-mon
Dominating the entrance to the Sensoji Temple is the kaminari-mon or "Thunder Gate". This imposing Buddhist structure features a massive paper lantern dramatically painted in vivid red-and-black tones to suggest thunderclouds and lightning. Kaminari-mon contains two protective deities - (left side) Raijin - God of Thunder and (right side) Fujin - God of Wind.

Kaminarimon Sensoji Temple
Kaminari Gate Kaminarimon Sensoji Temple.

Within the precincts stand a stately five-story pagoda and the main hall, devoted to Kannon Bosatsu.

Nakamise-dori
Nakamise-dori, the street leading from the Thunder Gate to the Sensoji Temple itself, is lined with small shops selling omiyage (souvenirs) ranging from fans, ukiyo-e (woodblock prints), kimono and other robes, Buddhist scrolls, traditional sweets, to Godzilla toys, t-shirts, and cell-phone trinkets. These shops themselves are part of a living tradition of selling to pilgrims who walked to Sensōji. Pilgrims and tourists flocking to Sensoji have shopped at the small stores here for centuries. Many tourists, both Japanese and from abroad, visit Sensōji every year. Catering to the visiting crowds, the surrounding area has many traditional shops and eating places that feature traditional dishes (hand-made noodles, sushi, tempura, etc.).

One of the shops along Nakamise-dori, Sensoji Temple
One of the shops along Nakamise-dori, Sensoji Temple

Asakusa Shrine

Asakusa Shrine (浅草神社, Asakusa Jinja) is a Shinto shrine next to the Sensoji Temple. It is dedicated to the three men who established Sensoji Temple. Two of them, fishermen named Hinokuma Hamanari and Hinokuma Takenari, found a statue of the bosatsu Kannon in the river Sumida in 628. The third, the village headman, Haji no Nakatomo, built Sensoji Temple.

Once a part of Sensoji Temple, Asakusa Jinja became separate during the Meiji period.

Within the temple is a quiet contemplative garden kept in the distinctive Japanese style.

Sensoji Temple Pictures

See more than 65 photographs of the Sensoji Temple and surrounds including the very beautiful garden in cherry blossom season.

(Article based on Wikipedia article and used under the GNU Free Documentation License)

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