Koryuji Temple (広隆寺)

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Koryuji Temple is a Shingon Buddhist temple in Uzumasa. The main deity is Prince Shotoku. It was the clan temple of the Hata clan, a migrant tribe, and is the oldest temple in Kyoto that existed before the creation of capital Heian-kyo. The temple hosts a well-known treasure, a statue of Maitreya Bosatsu (Maitreya Bodhisattva) half-lotus. It is also a temple dedicated to the worship of Prince Shotoku.

Buildings in Koryuji

As you exit from the Uzumasa-Koryuji Station, you will see the tower gate, the entrance to Koryuji Temple, just ahead of you.

Koryuji Tower Gate
Koryuji Tower Gate

The auditorium of Koryuji Temple is an Important Cultural Property, but was under repair when I visited there. The main hall of the Keikyuin, which is a national treasure, is usually not open to the public, so there are no photos available.

In the Jizo Hall of the Koryuji Temple, there is a sitting wooden statue of Jizo Bosatsu called “Jizo with a belly band”. It is beneficial for easy childbirth.

Belly-band Jizo of Koryuji
Belly-band Jizo of Koryuji

The main hall is Jogu-Oin Hall. It enshrines Prince Shotoku.

Jogu-Oin Hall
Jogu-Oin Hall

The highlight of the Temple is the Reihouden Hall. The hall exhibits 20 national treasures and 48 important cultural properties from the Asuka to Kamakura periods, including the Maitreya statue (known as National Treasure No. 1) and a large Senju (Thousand-armed) Kannon from the Fujiwara period. It is an amazing space. Unfortunately, it is a little too dark and some of the exhibits are too far away from visitors. You cannot take photos inside the Reihouden Hall.

Reihouden Hall (Museum)
Reihouden Hall (Museum)

Nearby spots

Houkongoin Temple, famous for its flowers, is a 15-minute walk away. Houkongoin Temple is open to the public only during the flower season.

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