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Daru-madness at Osaka’s Katsuōji Temple

Katsuō-ji itself is cloaked in the northern mountains that rise from Ōsaka’s Minō district, and it’s one of the oldest temples in Japan to discover the traditional Daruma dolls.



Daruma dolls stacked up at Katsuo-ji, Osaka.


Tiny wooden Daruma sit dotted across three stone lanterns, backed in the green woodland of Katsuō-ji.

Thousands of ‘used’ Daruma? Welcome to the mountain temple of Katsuō-ji.

One could say with confidence that the temple of Katsuō-ji could be classed as an ‘under the radar’ type of location.

When people think of Ōsaka, they more commonly think of castles, skyscrapers or Universal Studios Japan.

However, Ōsaka (historically named Naniwa) is a vast and varied city and prefecture.

Although it may be home to Japan’s tallest building (Abeno Harukas), it’s also home to Japan’s first state-build Buddhist temple (Shi-tennōji). A natural basin, the city is framed with Japan’s characteristic mountains—home to much more than visitors may realise.

Katsuō-ji itself is cloaked in the northern mountains that rise from Ōsaka’s Minō district.

If you’re ready for a long day, it would be easy to visit Katsuō-ji of a morning before heading to the Minō falls hiking trail. With a bit of planning, you’ll have the perfect day in nature waiting for you just a short ride from Ōsaka.

The ‘Winning Daruma Temple’

Despite its fresh appearance, Buddhist monks first established Katsuō-ji in AD 727, making it one of Ōsaka’s older temple sites.

(You can read the rest of the article at this link. This article was first published by Team JJ on September 4, 2020. Check here for deeper and unique insights into visiting Japan, including wellness, travel, cuisine and more. Find us on Instagram and on Facebook.)

Author: Team JJ