Little Mizuho Town, seated at the foot of the Okutama mountains, stands on its own two feet when it comes to quality shrines and temples. The town's natural location adds further beauty to its locations making a visit well worth the effort. Here is an introduction to some of the temples and shrines of Mizuho and how to reach them.
A venerable location surrounded by trees, Azusamiten Shrine was said to have been established in the 9th century as one of the eight official shrines of the Tama region. With its design and depth, evidence of its former status - once receiving official protection and support from the Imperial Court - remains.
A 9-minute drive from Hakonegasaki Station on the JR Hachiko Line.
The first thing that impresses at Enpukuji Temple is the huge niomon entrance gate with its attendant nio guardians. Inside, with its large grounds hosting festivals and ceremonies throughout the year, visitors will find a beautifully designed shoro bell tower with an old 12th century style hakamagoshi walled tower.
A 7-minute walk from Hakonegasaki Station on the JR Hachiko Line.
Perhaps the town's standout destination, Fukushoji Temple is a miracle of aesthetic beauty and design. Home to stunning 5-storied pagoda, shoro bell tower and an incredibly detailed romon two-storied entrance gate, this 14th century temple is part of a cluster of temples making a visit here well worth it.
An 8-minute drive from Hakonegasaki Station on the JR Hachiko Line.Sayama Shrine
A sense of history and primal piety enshrouds the 11th century Sayama Shrine. Set back from a flight of stairs surrounded by decent grove of forest, the shrine requires an almost mystical ascent to reach. Once inside, visitors will find a number of sub-shrines with their own torii gates, as well as the venerable features of the main shrine itself.
A 10-minute walk from Hakonegasaki Station on the JR Hachiko Line.