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Nihon-ji Temple

Chiba

So many highlights on the spacious grounds of the temple with a good view
Ascetic monks gather here for training

The Zen temple on the southern slope of Nokogiri Yama (Saw Mountain) is an Important Cultural Property of Japan. Founded by Emperor Shomu in 725, the temple has accommodated famous monks, including Ryoben, Kukai and Jikaku. The wide grounds over 330,000 square meters are dotted with interesting spots, such as historic buildings, precious cultural properties and gatherings of rare plants. There used to be 7 halls, 12 temples and 100 residential quarters for monks. Walking up a well-maintained approach, you will see: a Nio Gate with Kongo Rikishi, who are guardians of Buddhism; a cycad tree over 800 years old; a bell that is a nationally designated Important Cultural Property; Donkairo, a building from the Edo Period (1603-1868) where you can enjoy tea on Sundays and holidays; Yakushiruriko Nyorai, the principal image of the temple, which is a 31 m-tall open-air stone Buddha and the largest cliff Buddha statue in Japan, and; over 100 Buddhist statues, such as Hyakushaku Kuannon and Tokai 1500 Rakan (arhats).

In the area around the peak there is an observatory named "Jigokunozoki" (gazing into hell) overlooking Tokyo Bay, Boso Peninula, Mount Fuji and the entire Kanto region. The observatory is so named because gazing down from the protrusion on the top of the cliff feels like you are looking down at hell. A restaurant near the observatory is glass-walled so that you can enjoy a meal while looking at the open scenery.

Information

Address: Nokogiriyama, Awa-gun Kyonan-machi, Chiba
Phone: 0470-55-1103
Hours open to visitors: 8:00-17:00 (5:00-17:00 on New Year's day)
Admission Fee: 600 yen (adults); 400 yen (children)
Directions: 8 minutes by foot from Kanaya Station on JR Uchibo Line (one hour and 40 minutes from Tokyo) to Ropeway Nokogiriyama Sanroku (base) Station, and then 45 minutes by foot from Nokogiriyama Sancho (summit) Station to the main hall. (Car) 5 minutes from Kyonan-Hota Interchange on the Futtsu-Tateyama Expressway (car parking available).

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