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Zenkō-ji Temple, Nagano

(1,200+ reviews on the web)
Religious Site
One of the last remaining Buddhist pilgrimage sites in Japan, Zenkō-ji Temple draws worshippers seeking enlightenment from all over the country. Originally built in the 7th century, the temple compound stood before Japanese Buddhism was divided into sects, so priests of two different Buddhist schools share management of the shrine. The complex contains several gardens and buildings, including prayer rooms and a nunnery. The main temple holds a hidden Buddha statue that even the chief priest isn't allowed to view. Walk the pitch-black corridor under the temple to find and touch the hanging key of enlightenment. Our Nagano itinerary planner makes visiting Zenkō-ji Temple and other Nagano attractions simple, and helps you make a travel plan personal to you.
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14 days in Japan BY A USER FROM AUSTRALIA November, teens, kids, culture, outdoors, historic sites, museums, popular PREFERENCES: November, teens, kids, culture, outdoors, historic sites, museums ATTRACTION STYLE: Popular PACE: Medium 3 days in Nagano BY A USER FROM MALAYSIA December, culture, outdoors, relaxing, romantic, historic sites, popular PREFERENCES: December, culture, outdoors, relaxing, romantic, historic sites ATTRACTION STYLE: Popular PACE: Medium 3 days in Nagano BY A USER FROM MALAYSIA December, culture, outdoors, relaxing, romantic, historic sites, popular PREFERENCES: December, culture, outdoors, relaxing, romantic, historic sites ATTRACTION STYLE: Popular PACE: Medium 18 days in Japan BY A USER FROM ARGENTINA October, kids, culture, outdoors, relaxing, romantic, historic sites, museums, shopping, fast-paced, popular & hidden gems PREFERENCES: October, kids, culture, outdoors, relaxing, romantic, historic sites, museums, shopping ATTRACTION STYLE: Popular & hidden gems PACE: Fast-paced 18 days in Japan BY A USER FROM ARGENTINA October, kids, culture, outdoors, relaxing, romantic, historic sites, museums, shopping, fast-paced, popular & hidden gems PREFERENCES: October, kids, culture, outdoors, relaxing, romantic, historic sites, museums, shopping ATTRACTION STYLE: Popular & hidden gems PACE: Fast-paced 10 days in Japan BY A USER FROM CANADA June, popular PREFERENCES: June ATTRACTION STYLE: Popular PACE: Medium 21 days in Japan BY A USER FROM AUSTRALIA January, culture, outdoors, relaxing, romantic, historic sites, museums, shopping, popular PREFERENCES: January, culture, outdoors, relaxing, romantic, historic sites, museums, shopping ATTRACTION STYLE: Popular PACE: Medium 20 days in Japan BY A USER FROM AUSTRALIA January, culture, outdoors, relaxing, romantic, historic sites, museums, shopping, popular PREFERENCES: January, culture, outdoors, relaxing, romantic, historic sites, museums, shopping ATTRACTION STYLE: Popular PACE: Medium 3 days in Nagano BY A USER FROM AUSTRALIA September, kids, popular PREFERENCES: September, kids ATTRACTION STYLE: Popular PACE: Medium 16 days in Japan BY A USER FROM AUSTRALIA May, culture, outdoors, relaxing, historic sites, popular & hidden gems PREFERENCES: May, culture, outdoors, relaxing, historic sites ATTRACTION STYLE: Popular & hidden gems PACE: Medium 19 days in Japan BY A USER FROM SINGAPORE December, culture, outdoors, relaxing, historic sites, shopping, popular PREFERENCES: December, culture, outdoors, relaxing, historic sites, shopping ATTRACTION STYLE: Popular PACE: Medium 15 days in Japan BY A USER FROM CANADA June, popular PREFERENCES: June ATTRACTION STYLE: Popular PACE: Medium
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Reviews
TripAdvisor
  • Definitely not to be missed, especially the door to paradise... and being alone made it more exciting! easy walk from the station and you should enjoy the snacks on the main street, rest and take it i...  more »
  • On the evening of the matsushiro after accidental. Walking from Nagano station walk along the entrance path to the environment, will take some time, but just right. We have very easy to visit the souvenir shop in Omotesando was starting to close down as early as around 3 o'clock, but reduces the number of minutes people. Visit the childhood since Zenko-ji Temple, memory Hall both gate and nioh was splendid large and very solemn.
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  • I find that all temples in Japan to be interesting. What sets this one off is that it has a quaint street with shops and food vendors leading up to the temple, where you can grab a snack or two and re...  more »
Google
  • Mostly barrier free. Lots of families, locals and tourists. After a walk along the busy line of stores up to the temple area, you can enjoy various statues, put smoke on your head (watch the locals) and buy omamori (good luck charms). Main temple asks you to purchase a ticket to enter but you've come this far so worth it! Had shichigosan and a wedding going on. Quite exciting. I say mostly barrier free but if not, all barrier free. Just need to go off to the right or left but can get into the main temple. Btw sign asks Pokemon trainers to greet and pay respect to the temple, as the Pokemons here are also doing the same.
  • An exciting and vast area with plenty to see and do. In November the scenery was incredible. As with everywhere in Japan, everyone there was extremely pleasant to be around.
  • It's an incredible temple. Really authentic and the surroundings are rich in culture. Please. PLEASE, don't miss the Mio (仁王) in this temple because they are majestic and I felt most of the people were missing them. The left guardian (吽形) is a special beauty.
  • Probably the highlight of Nagano city and one of the few places I would recommend. Been to Zenko-ji in summer and winter but must say it looks spectacular covered in snow.
  • Absolutely stunning .