Nara Ken

by / on May 12, 2016 at 9:46 PM / in Nara Ken, Nara-City

Byakugo-ji: Treasures on Mt. Takamado in Nara City.

Byakugo-ji history and quick facts: Byakugo-ji (白毫寺), a Buddhist temple situated at the foot of Mt. Takamado, in Nara City, Japan. It is believed to have been originally built as the villa of Prince Shiki (志貴皇子), the father of Emperor Kōnin (光仁天皇), and a famous poet from the 7th to 8th century. Prince Shiki’s father was the 38th Emperor of […]

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by / on May 10, 2016 at 6:45 PM / in Nara Ken, Nara-City

Shin-Yakushi-ji, Built by Empress Kōmyō in 747.

Shin-Yakushi-ji: A few days ago, while visiting Kasuga Taisha in Nara, I dropped by the Shin-Yakushi-ji (新薬師寺) temple. Shin-Yakushi-ji is famous for Yakushi Nyorai (薬師如来) statue. Yakushi Nyorai is surrounded by a group of Twelve Divine Generals. According to records at Tōdai-ji, Shin-Yakushi-ji was founded in March 747 as Kōyaku-ji (香薬寺) by Empress Kōmyō (光明皇后 – 701–760) wishing for the […]

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by / on February 2, 2014 at 9:50 PM / in Heijō Palace Area, Nara Ken, Nara-City

Kikō-ji Temple in Nara Founded by Gyōki in 721!

Kikō-ji Temple in Nara: Last week Friday, while cycling around the Saidaiji area of Nara, I visited the Kikō-ji Temple (喜光寺). This old temple, dating back to 721 AD is also known as Sugawara-dera. Kikō-ji Temple was founded by Priest Gyōk (行基). An impressive Nandaimon or South Gate (南大門) is the entrance. Two fierce looking Kongōrikishi (金剛力士) or Niō (仁王) […]

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by / on January 25, 2014 at 8:52 PM / in Heijō Palace Area, Nara-City

Biking Along Kizugawa to Heijō Palace in Nara!

Biking Along Kizugawa: Yesterday, January 24, I went on a bike ride along the Kizugawa River towards Heijō Palace grounds in Nara City. It was a fine day, the forecast was a spring like day with temperatures rising to 12 degrees Celsius. I have recently bought an MTB as part of my exercise plan. Although I am exercising on a […]

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by / on February 22, 2013 at 1:27 PM / in Nara Ken, North Nara

Tenman jinja (天満神社) in Rural Okugaharachō, Nara-ken!

Yesterday, while driving around along route 4 in the vicinity of Okugaharachō in Nara-ken, I came across this small rural shinto shrine. In front of the shrine is a small river and there are some sakura trees at the entrance. There is something different about the Komainu (狛犬) that are guarding the shrine. The left one has its claw on […]

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by / on February 1, 2013 at 9:06 PM / in Autumn-Momiji, Matsuri-Festival, Nara Ken, Uda County

Ōno-ji Temple and the Carved Rock Maitreya!

Last year in autumn I wanted to see different shrines and temples in the province of Nara. On this particular day , the aim was to visit Ōno-ji Temple, Murō-ji temple and Tanzan jinja, all in Uda County. It was a fine day and the autumn colours where at its peak. There are not so many tourists visiting these shrines […]

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by / on June 29, 2012 at 4:16 PM / in Nara Ken, Nara-City

Futai-ji Temple: A Poet’s Garden!

Futai-ji Temple: Futai-ji Temple (不退寺) is a small temple not so far from the city center of Nara. It actually is on the “Rekishino-Michi” hiking path. Some of the sides on this trail are burial mounds of past Emperors and a few more temples. The path is about a 4-kilometer-long route and is a perfect road to stroll from Saidai-ji to […]

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