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Published on 03.31.2016
Sensō-ji temple is located in Asakusa, part of Tokyo's “downtown,” along the east bank of the Sumida river. Asakusa has developed as a popular downtown area since Edo period (1603AD – 1868). Some historical remnants of time passed, such as the rickshaw running on the street, can still be found here and there around the modernized city.
Sensō-ji temple has stood since long before Edo period, being founded in the 7th century. The huge red lantern of Kaminarimon (thunder gate) is the first thing to attract visitors' eyes. Kaminarimon is so impactful that it is known as the symbol of Asakusa. Once you pass through the gate, the front approach leads you to another gate, Hōzōmon. The front approach is always crowded with many people enjoying traditional sweets and snacks like dango (small rice cake balls), taiyaki (fish-shaped pastry filled with beans paste), agesenbei (fried crackers), or looking around souvenir shops along both sides of the street. Some traditional goods like kanzashi (hair accessory) and kimono are found some stores. This front approach is called nakamise-dori street, after these souvenir shops which are called nakamise.
At Hōzōmon, two Niō statues stand protecting the gate. After further entering Hōzōmon, you finally reach the main part of the temple! People enjoy the smoke from the Jōkōro, a huge incense burner, hoping that the smoke will heal their illness or any health troubles. You can also have fun with omikuji, where you draw a slip of paper, revealing your fortune. If your omikuji turned out to be bad, it is said you can negate that bad fortune by tying the slip of paper to branch so that your bad luck will remain there. Hondo, the main building of the temple, holds many valuable artworks. There is also a gorgeous cabinet with lacquered ornaments in which a holy effigy is placed. Myōō statues, Kannon statues, and paintings on the ceiling which depict a dragon and divine people. In addition, there are many charming buildings in the traditional style within the temple ground, although some of them have been reconstructed after the second world war. Among the reconstructed building include: Gojūnotō, Bentendō, Yakushidō, etc. The scenery around the temple grounds which accommodates both historical temple buildings, and the modern Tokyo Sky Tree is sure to give a special impression.
Sightseeing spots around Sensō-ji
Open all the day (office hour: 9am～4:30pm)
Asakusa Hanayashiki (amusement park)
Open hours: 10am~6pm.
Admission: adult (13~64 years old) 1000 yen
child (0~12) 500 yen
pensioner (above 65) 500 yen
Open hours: 10am~6pm
Admission: adult 1,080 yen
High school and University students: 864 yen
Elementary and Junior high school students: 540 yen
Preschool-aged children are free
Source: Japan in HD (Youtube)