Hall is open to the public until July and houses enormous artworks.

Nara boasts many beautiful temples, including Hasedera Temple, which you might remember from some beautiful and touching photos taken there a few years ago. Our Japanese-language reporter Egawa Tasuku recently had the opportunity to tour the place, one of the Four Great Temples of Yamato (Yamato being the name by which the Nara region used to be known).

The tour was part of a prefectural campaign encouraging people to tour all four of the temples: Okadera, Murouji, Abe Monjuin, and Hasedera Temples. Tasuku had heard that this Hasedera in particular has some unique and eye-catching features, so he was excited about the opportunity.

▼ This was his guide, Mr. Takiguchi, who also runs the temple’s Instagram account.

Hasedera is said to beautiful all year round due to the number and types of flowers planted on its grounds, so much so that it’s often nicknamed “the temple of flowers”. This road leading up to the main temple, for instance, is lined with giant peonies.

Since Tasuku went to Hasedera in late March, he wasn’t able to see the peonies, but he’s sure they’re in full bloom around this time. There are also hydrangeas set to bloom right after these!

The path leads up to the main temple hall, or the hondou.

It’s typically forbidden to enter the main temple at Hasedera, but the temple is holding a campaign where visitors have the rare chance to tour the inside. You can also see the great Buddha Boddhisatva statue on the temple grounds for 1,000 yen (US$6.30), and you can even touch its feet.

Inside, Tasuku was able to see the main Buddha Boddhisatva statue that towers over 10 meters (32.8 feet) tall. He was utterly speechless looking up at the huge masterpiece. The walls and ceiling were also decorated with splendor.

▼ Photos of the main statue typically aren’t allowed, but Tasuku was able to take a picture of the area around it.

Next, Tasuku headed to the main temple, which is a designated Important Cultural Property in Japan. Entering this building costs just 500 yen, and it’s only open until July 7.

The main attraction in this building is a replica of an enormous Buddhist tapestry. When we say enormous, we mean it–it’s about 16 meters, or as Tasuku put it, the height of a brachiosaurus.

There are many other similarly gigantic works inside the main building, so Tasuku thought it was worth every yen.

Tasuku was impressed by the sheer size and beauty of everything he saw at Nara’s Hasedera Temple, and it highly recommends it as a stop on your Japan trip. Don’t forget to visit the other three of the Four Great Temples of Yamato, too!

Temple information
Hasedera Temple / 長谷寺
Address: Nara-ken, Sakurai-shi, Hase 731-1

Photos ©SoraNews24
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