Zenko-ji Temple, Nagano

4.5
One of the last remaining Buddhist pilgrimage sites in Japan, Zenko-ji Temple draws worshippers seeking enlightenment from all over the country. Originally built in the 7th century, the temple compound stood before Japanese Buddhism was divided into sects, so priests of two different Buddhist schools share management of the shrine. The complex contains several gardens and buildings, including prayer rooms and a nunnery. The main temple holds a hidden Buddha statue that even the chief priest isn't allowed to view. Walk the pitch-black corridor under the temple to find and touch the hanging key of enlightenment. Using our online itinerary creator, Nagano attractions like Zenko-ji Temple can form part of a personalized travel itinerary.
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TripAdvisor Traveler Rating 4.5
1,802 reviews
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  • We traveled from Tokyo to see the first of many temples. A big and beautiful one it is. The gate alone is already impressive, with its gigantic guards both side of it. Inside, there was some sort of c...  more »
  • Japan has temples everywhere, Japan has people everywhere, if you're lucky enough to combine just a huge, cute, very old temple, and little people experience you earn a lot, if you can visit Nagano in low season, you're lucky enough to combine it all for you, a common tranquility in Japan accompanied by a special solitude to enjoy these places.
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