Beautifully detailed (Photo: kanegen / CC BY 2.0)
Beautifully detailed (Photo: kanegen / CC BY 2.0)
- 2 min read

Horinouchi Myoho-ji Temple

A Buddhist temple filled with culture and history

Located in Koenji, Suginami City, lies the famous Horinouchi Myoho-ji Temple. This early 17th century temple, once part of the Shingon Buddhist tradition but now firmly within the Nichiren fold, is replete with history. Having survived the Tokyo bombings of World War II, it comes as no surprise that many of its structures have been designated as cultural properties by both city and country.

Featuring the celebrated multi-storey Nio-mon and Tetsu-mon gates - the former home to kongorikishi statues donated by the fourth Tokugawa shogun and the latter a 19th century iron collaboration between Japan and Britain - the temple grounds are also home to the Soshido, a building dedicated to sect founder, Nichiren. At the top of this building visiters will find some protective demons guarding the building while nearby in the Gakudo structure lie scores of hanging historical ema votive pictures.

Expressive pathways
Expressive pathways (Photo: kanegen / CC BY 2.0)

Along with history lies culture and tradition, like the traditional yakuyoke ritual. Performed at the beginning of the year, yakuyoke is undertaken by those who seek to purge and cleanse themselves of the bad luck and misfortune that are believed to have accumulated over the previous year. There is also the famous Joya no Kane event held on New Year's Eve. Here, a massive 18th century-cast copper bell is struck by those waiting in line, is a popular way for locals to ring in the new year and is open to anybody interested in doing so, free of charge.

Robust stone lanterns
Robust stone lanterns (Photo: kanegen / CC BY 2.0)

Horinouchi Myoho-ji Temple is certainly an impressive Buddhist temple. With so much in the way of history, recognised properties and spiritual traditions and experiences, the temple makes for a most pleasant destination in Suginami City.

Getting there

Horinouchi Myoho-ji Temple is about a 10 to 15-minute walk from Shin-Koenji or Higashi-Koenji Stations on the Marunouchi Line.

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Elizabeth S 3 years ago
That's so warm and welcoming that anybody can take a turn at ringing the bell on the new year.

I'm wondering if 2021 in Japan will be rung in with joya no kane. I'm hoping priests will do it even if the public can't join in.
Sleiman Azizi Author 3 years ago
Same everywhere....

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