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Photo By: PIXTA/ オフィスK
Region
Kansai
Island
Honshu
Largest City
Nara
Population
1,442,862

Hasedera Temple (Nara)

Hasedera or the “Temple of Flowers” resides high on the mountainside in Nara Prefecture.

By Arpita Mitra

Hasedera Temple in Nara Prefecture is the main temple of the Buzan sect of Shingon Buddhism, giving rise to 3000 member temples in Japan. This temple is beautiful throughout the year because of an abundance of seasonal blooms, earning the name “Temple of Flowers.” Additionally, there is also a magnificent five-storied pagoda on the temple grounds.

Tales From History

Hasedera Temple Nara

Photo by: PIXTA/ Hiroko Climb up the 399 steps.

Hasedera Temple was built in 686 and was expanded in 727 by order of Emperor Shoumu. The temple can be reached by climbing a series of 399 stairs, believed to be holy by the pilgrims.

One of the temple highlights is a statue of the deity Kannon or the Goddess of Mercy. It was carved out of a camphor tree that was large enough to make two statues, one remains in Nara and the other in Hasedera Temple in Kamakura. Legend states that out of the two statues, one would remain in Nara while the other would be released into the ocean to appear where people need help. After fifteen years, the other Kannon statue washed ashore in Kamakura in Kanagawa Prefecture.

Traditions and Culture

Hasedera Temple Nara

Photo by: PIXTA/ shibugakky Peace and serenity.

The temple’s main hall is one of the largest halls in Nara Prefecture and includes the statue of Kannon. There is a Lotus Sutra, a decorative sutra transcribed onto a beautiful writing paper, a masterpiece of the Hasedera Temple representing the Kamakura Period. The 11-headed Kannon is the largest wooden statue in Japan. It is believed that the Kannon keeps its eyes on those who need her assistance.

The main hall offers sweeping views from its balcony, particularly during spring and autumn. As the temple area is less crowded and away from the city, it helps people immerse themselves in the beauty of nature and return home with peace and calmness.

Things To Know

Hours

The entry time of the temple from Apr. to Sept.: 8:30 A.M. – 5 P. M., Oct., Nov., Mar.: 9 A.M. – 5 P.M., Dec. to Feb. 9 A.M. to 5 P. M.

For those with mobility issues, there is a shuttle service available. Please enquire at the reception desk or parking lot.

Tripods and monopods are prohibited in the temple grounds, refrain from operating drones.

How To Get There

Address

By train

Hasedera Temple is about a 20-minute walk from Hasedera station on the Kintetsu-Osaka line by train

By car

Hasedera Temple is a six-hour drive from Tokyo station and a 41-minute drive from Nara Kintetsu station.

Where To Stay

Itaniya
  • 828 Hase, Sakurai-shi, Nara, 633-0112 Japan
  • ¥9,900 - ¥10,560
  • 4.24/5 (139 reviews)
  • 0.6 km
Fairfield by Marriott Nara Tenri Yamanobe-no-Michi
  • 438-7 Somanochicho, Tenri-shi, Nara, 632-0032 Japan
  • ¥15,730 - ¥15,730
  • 4.82/5 (45 reviews)
  • 8.0 km
Hotel Nara Sakurai no Sato
  • 2220-1 Taie, Sakurai-shi, Nara, 633-0044 Japan
  • ¥13,000 - ¥13,000
  • 4.19/5 (38 reviews)
  • 8.1 km
NIPPONIA Tawaramoto Maruto Shoyu
  • 170 Iyodo, Shiki-gun Tawaramoto-cho, Nara, 636-0243 Japan
  • ¥36,955 - ¥54,910
  • 4.82/5 (13 reviews)
  • 8.4 km

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