Grave of Kozukenosuke Kira, famous due to the "Chushingura" story, and a Japanese garden made in the style of a feudal lord who was a master of ceremonial tea
The temple was built by Yoshisada Kira (a Sengoku Period commander who was a cousin of Ieyasu Tokugawa) in 1600 as the family temple (a temple in which a family worships from generation to generation and the family's ancestral tablets are placed) of the Kira Family. Paintings on 44 fusuma doors drawn by Taiga Ikeno that express the beauty of nature, which are in the main hall of the temple, are splendid. The paintings are disclosed to the public on New Year's Day though they cannot be seen at other times.
Behind the main hall is a dry landscape rock garden which you can tour. Enshu Kobori was both a feudal lord and a master of ceremonial tea, and he started a tea ceremony school; he sought the mind of Japanese beauty throughout his life. He also engaged in making gardens and left many Japanese gardens. This venerable garden was made in his style, and it is an admirable garden that expresses the beauty of nature in a condensed manner.
In addition, there is also the grave of Kozukenosuke Yoshihisa Kira, who is famous for an enemy role in a story entitled "Kanadehon Chushingura," which is one of the best kabuki/bunraku plays. A wooden figure that is believed to have been colored by Kozukenosuke Yoshihisa Kira has been designated as a prefectural cultural property. "Chushingura" is a story that is very popular among Japanese people. It has been made into a film about 40 times and into a TV drama over 30 times. It has also been frequently made into stage plays and novels. Many tourists visit Kezoji Temple based on such interest and feel history.
Address: 58 Azasannoyama, Okayama, Nishio-shi, Aichi
Hours open to visitors: 9:00-17:00 (9:00-16:00 in winter)
Admission Fee: Free (consult with the information desk to view the temple's treasures and garden)
Closed: No holiday
Directions: 5 minutes by car from Kami-Yokosuka Station (1 hour and 5 minutes from Nagoya Station) of Meitetsu Nishio Line. (Car) 40 minutes from Otowagamagori Interchange on the Tomei Expressway.