fbpx
Connect with us
Advertisement

Culture

Hozan-ji Temple: in the Mountains of Ikoma, Nara’s Hidden Wonder

If you feel like riding a dog-faced cable car up to a Crouching Tiger-esque mountain temple, hidden in a Studio Ghibli style village, head to Hozan-ji!

Published

on

Hozan-ji is in many ways the embodiment of a perfect Japanese experience, in miniature.

The otherworldly mountain temple complex is largely unknown to foreign tourists and seldom crowded by local visitors outside of the spring/autumn peak seasons.

If you feel like riding a dog-faced cable car up to a Crouching Tiger-esque mountain temple, hidden in a Studio Ghibli style village, head to Hozan-ji!

Ikoma's 7th century temple is reminiscent of movie-style depictions of hidden temples and secretive religious orders.
Ikoma’s 7th century location is reminiscent of movie-style depictions of hidden temples and secretive religious orders.

Hozan-ji: Ikoma’s Hidden Dragon.

Like many other sites in Japan, the sanctification of Mt. Ikoma occurred long before any actual Buddhist temples were built in the same location. In fact, before Hozan-ji temple was completed in the 1600s, Mt. Ikoma was used as a ‘training site’ for the ascetic practices of Buddhist monks.

The practices would include physical training (climbing the mountain daily) and sitting isolated in nature (Zazen), among other things.

(You can read the rest of the article at this link. This article was first published by Team JJ on March 26, 2022. Check here for deeper and unique insights into visiting Japan, including wellness, travel, cuisine and more. Find us on Instagram and on Facebook.)