Sanjusangen-do Temple, Kyoto

“Sanjusangen-do Temple” in Higashiyama Kyoto is one of the tourist attractions that you should visit whenever you come to Kyoto. The main hall of 1001 Senju Kannon Bosatsu (Thousand-Armed Kannon Bodhisattva, a Buddhist Goddess of Mercy) are masterpieces. Its power is perhaps the only thing you can taste here in Japan. The official name of “Sanjusangen-do Temple” is “Renge Oin”. It was built in 1164. It is the beginning of Sanjusangen-do Temple to have been built in the Imperial Palace by Shirakawa ex-emperor after being known as the person who performed Insei (rule by a retired Emperor) in the Heian era. (approximately 1,200 years ago.) “Sanjusangen-do Temple” came to be called because it has a unique architectural style with 33 pillars in the Naijin (the inner temple) of Hondo Hall.
The denomination belongs to Tendai sect and the principal image is Senju Kannon Bosatsu. The main hall and the huge Senju Kannon statue exceeding 7 meters have been designated as national treasures and 1001 other Senju Kannon statues are designated as important cultural assets.


The name Sanjusangen-do Temple comes from the number between the pillar of main halls of a Buddhist temple is 33 of them.
“Statue of the thousand-armed Kannon” which built behind a standing statues of the 28 Attendants of Senju Kannon is to fascinate many people here. “Statue of the thousand-armed Kannon” has 11 faces overhead and 40 hands on both sides.
For Senju Kannon the number 33 is special. It is said that Senju Kannon has 33 temporary figures, and it saves people while changing its figure. In other words, for people who believe in Senju Kannon, “33” is a keyword of salvation. So, as following to it, a long slender building with 33 pillars was made.


The scenery of 1,000 Kannon statues along with the orderliness on the dais are beyond a doubt the best part. Though in such a lot of Kannon statues, there is not one thing of the same face.


“Toshiya” (an event as part of of Kyujutsu : the Japanese classical martial art of shooting an arrow from a bow at a target) is held every year here, toward the Seijin no Hi (Coming of Age Day), and it becomes a early spring tradition of Kyoto. Performed Toshiya is the tournament called “Ohmato Taikai” now, and a game player shoots a bow towards the target that approximately 60m away in the precincts from the west side of main hall of a Buddhist temple.


It is the part of the adult female to become the flower of the tournament in particular. The woman challenges a competition in an appearance of wearing a kimono and the figure is dignified and splendid. The activeness unique to New Year holidays enlivens news every year.



Name:Sanjusangen-do Temple
Adresse:Sanjusangendomawaricho 657 Kyoto Higashiyama-ku, Kyoto 605-0941 Japan
Access:Keihan Railwai Keihanhonsen Line “Shichijo-eki Station” (5 minutes walk)
Tel:(+81) 75-561-0467
Price/Charge:600 yen (Adult)
400 yen (High School Student or Under)
300 yen (Elementary School Students or Under)
Official site:

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