Todaiji Temple

The Great Buddha statue, located in the Todaiji Temple in Nara, japan, is a national treasure and the world’s largest wooden structure. Todaiji Temple was originally founded during the Nara period, when Nara city served as the capital of Japan. Today, it is a popular tourist destination and has been designated as one of the Historic Monuments of Ancient Nara by the UNESCO World Heritage Convention.

The Great Buddha statue is a magnificent work of art that was created by the combined efforts of 2.6 million people. It is housed in the Great Buddha Hall, which is the largest wooden building in the world. The statue itself is 14.98 meters tall, with its ears measuring 2.54 meters in length. It was created in the year 752 and is modeled after the Vairocana Buddha.

To visit Todaiji Temple, you can take the JR or Kintetsu Nara lines from Osaka or Kyoto and get off at either JR Nara Station or Kintetsu Nara Station. From there, it is just a short walk to the temple. If you prefer to take the city bus, it is a 5-minute walk from the Todaiji Daibutsu-den/Kasuga-taisha-mae stops. Alternatively, you can board the loop bus at Kintetsu Nara Station and get off at the Daibutsuden-mae-chushajo stop.

The Daibutsu-den, or the Great Buddha Hall, is not only the home of the Great Buddha statue, but it is also a national treasure in itself. This tremendous wooden building has a long history, having been constructed in 1709. It suffered from two great fires but was rebuilt and now stands at a height of 57 meters. Despite its reduced size, it is still the largest wooden structure in the world.

In addition to the Great Buddha statue and the Daibutsu-den, Todaiji Temple is also home to numerous other national treasures and cultural assets. The temple itself was registered as a Historic Monument of Ancient Nara by the UNESCO World Heritage Convention in 1998. It is a must-visit destination for those interested in history, temple architecture, and Buddhist artwork.

One of the highlights of visiting Todaiji Temple is the Nigatsu-do Hall. This hall is located east of the Daibutsu-den and was constructed during the eighth century. It offers commanding views of Nara city, which can be enjoyed from the balcony after climbing a set of steep stairs. The hall is also known for hosting the “Shuni-e (Omizutori Festival)” in March, a ritual that prays for the well-being of the people. This festival features the lighting of large torches, creating a spectacular display of fire and water.

While visiting Nara, it is also worth exploring other World Heritage Sites in the area. Nara Park, located next to Todaiji Temple, is home to many deer that roam freely. It is a popular spot for visitors, especially those traveling between the various UNESCO World Heritage Sites in the city. Other notable sites include Kofukuji Temple, Yakushiji Temple, Toshodaiji Temple, and Kasuga Taisha Shrine.

In conclusion, Todaiji Temple and the Great Buddha statue are not to be missed when visiting Nara, Japan. The temple’s rich history, stunning architecture, and cultural significance make it a must-visit destination. Whether you are interested in Buddhist artwork, historical architecture, or simply enjoying the beauty of Nara city, Todaiji Temple offers a unique and memorable experience.

Address And Maps Location:

406-1 Zoshi-cho, Nara-shi, Nara-ken

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