Temples and Shrines of Tokyo Small Group Tour Including Kiyosumi Garden Visit

Temples and Shrines of Tokyo Small Group Tour Including Kiyosumi Garden Visit
Cultural & Theme Tours > Cultural Tours > Cultural Tour
$69.83
Duration: 3 hours
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Description

Through a visit to a Buddhist temple and a Shinto shrine, you will gain a fascinating insight into the two dominant religions of Japan. After an enlightening experience, which will include witnessing the famous Goma fire ritual, we’ll cool off at a traditional garden. If you want a deeper understanding of the role of religion and ritual in Japanese culture, this is a tour you won’t want to miss.

Join us on this off-the-beaten-track tour for an introduction to the two main religions of Japan.

To kick things off, we will start at the very active Fudo-do Temple. With the stunning temple grounds as our backdrop, we’ll learn how Shintoism and Buddhism, Japan’s two primary religions, coexist. We’ll discover the differences between the two and how they represent the whole spectrum of life.

We’ll watch a unique Buddhist ceremony known as a Goma ritual, held in the main temple hall. The ceremony involves burning a special kind of firewood as an offering to the principal deity, Fudo Myou.

When the ceremony ends, you’ll have a bit of time to explore the other floors of the temple, such as the trippy prayer corridor with 9500 miniature crystal statues. Talking is not allowed inside, so your guide will explain a bit beforehand about some of the things you can expect to see, and will answer any questions you have when we leave the temple.

From Fudo-do, we’ll stroll over to Hachiman Shrine, which is best known for its close ties to the sumo world. The shrine is said to be the birthplace of Kanjin-zumō (founded in 1684) and the origin of current, professional sumo. The grounds are adorned with sumo-related stone monuments, and when a sumo wrestler reaches the highest rank, known as yokozuna, there is a dedication ceremony done at the shrine.

Our last stop will be Kiyosumi to admire a traditional Japanese stroll garden. There has been a garden of some form here since the early 18th century but it was Iwasaki Yataro, the founder of Mitsubishi, who shaped it into the tranquil spot we know today. Yataro rebuilt the gardens for the pleasure and enjoyment of his employees and as a place to entertain important guests. 

At the end of our tour, we can leave you to explore the rest of the gardens or we’d be happy to walk you back to the train station. Before you go, don’t forget to ask your local guide for hints and tips on where else to visit during your stay in Tokyo. 

Through a visit to a Buddhist temple and a Shinto shrine, you will gain a fascinating insight into the two dominant religions of Japan. After an enlightening experience, which will include witnessing the famous Goma fire ritual, we’ll cool off at a traditional garden. If you want a deeper understanding of the role of religion and ritual in Japanese culture, this is a tour you won’t want to miss.