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Otagi Nenbutsuji Temple, Kyoto
(4.4/5 based on 140+ reviews on the web)
Though this hidden gem has some very unusual sights to offer, Otagi Nenbutsuji Temple often goes unnoticed amongst the region's huge variety of temples. Here you'll find over 1,200 mossy "rakan," stone sculptures of the Buddha's enlightened disciples, each with its own unique facial expression. Originally founded in the 8th century, the temple has been repaired and moved many times over the years, having faced destruction from both flooding and civil war. The statues were donated by worshippers in honor of the temple's most recent refurbishment, carved by amatuers between 1981 and 1991. You can spend plenty of time inspecting the various depictions of those alone, before even getting to the modest but intricate spiritual structures themselves. To visit Otagi Nenbutsuji Temple on your holiday in Kyoto, and find out what else Kyoto has to offer, use our Kyoto itinerary planner.
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Reviews
TripAdvisor
  • Are lined with more vivid facial expression, unlike the field of nenbutsu-ji Temple statues. Saga-field tunnel as it is an image of the mountains.
    View original
  • We had not heard of this temple before, but our guide brought us here. It was our son's favorite stop. The small stone carved figures are fascinating. We enjoyed looking at them, as they had a lot of ...  more »
  • Otagi Nenbutsuji Temple is an unconventional place for those who hate lots of pop-culture tourists. This temple is 3 kms away, uphill, from Togetsukyo bridge and situated in a forest. Therefore it is ...  more »