Kyoto #25: 萬福寺【Manpuku-Ji】

Must-see Zen temple
Manpuku-Ji in Kyoto.

Manpuku-Ji in Uji City, Kyoto is an unbelievably big temple from among a number of temples and shrines in Kyoto. It’S also well known as a temple that has much difference from the traditional Japanese Buddhist temples. Not only buildings but also the atmosphere of its ground is completely different from the other Japanese traditional temples and shrines. So people feel a bit strange but interesting feeling when they’re there.



Mampuku-Ji has official name Obakusan- Mampuku-Ji, this is to say, Manpuku-Ji is short for it! It’s well known as the awesome Chinese-style temple in Kyoto. In addition, everything including manner and words come from Chinese style.

What a large precinct…
People who come here for the first time would be definitely surprised with its large precinct and architectures. Large gates, So-mon gate and San-mon gate welcome to us, and they are so huge that makes people being overwhelmed.


So-mon gate

San-mon gate

Walking straight on the approach, we’ll get to Ten’no-den where some gods are enshrined there. It seems to be a Chinese style arrangement of such a temple in front of the main hall in a single-sided house building, which is very rare in Japan. Inside, there is a hoteison statue.



Awesome Gods Statues at Ten’no-den
The most famous one of them is statue of Hoteison. He was a legendary monk who was thought to live in China in the past and the huge bag and pot belly is characteristic of him. In Japan, there has been a traditional custom by which people have a trip to visit the Seven Gods of Fortune including Hotei. He is worshiped as a god of happiness, full of smiles and laughter.


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