The temple of Kan'ei-ji was founded in 1625 by a bishop named Tenkai Sojo to serve the Tokugawa clan, then rulers of Japan. The temple originally functioned as a prayer hall to protect the Ki-mon ("Demon's Gate") of Edo Castle, but later became the temple of the Tokugawa family in which the family held Buddhist services. Under the protection of the Tokugawa family, at its peak the temple housed 68 buildings of various sizes. Most of these, however, were destroyed by fire in subsequent civil wars. The temple also contained an enormous image of the Buddha which was destroyed by the great Kanto earthquake that hit Tokyo in 1923, and only the face remains enshrined today. In the graveyard at the back of the temple is a mausoleum enshrining six shoguns of the Tokugawa family. The mausoleum is made of bronze, 3 m in height, and has been designated an Important Cultural Property by the Japanese government.
Address: 1-chome, Uenosakuragi, Taito-ku, Tokyo
Admission Fee: Free in the temple precincts (Entrance into buildings is not permitted)
[Rail]JR Tokyo Stn./Yamanote Line/10-min. ride/Uguisudani Stn./7-min. walk