Where: Tokyo, Asakusa Station on the Ginza line
Duration: 1-1.5 hours
A Brief History: This buddhist temple was built in 645 for the goddess Kannon and a legend surrounding her. According to lore, two fishermen reeled in a statue of the goddess. When they attempted to throw it back, it made its way back to them again. Shoguns frequented the temple in the 12th century that led to its continued flourishing to modern-day Tokyo.
Point of Interest: There are several halls surrounding the main temple structure in the gardens. Few people were milling about the gardens (though that could have been because of the rain on the day we went), which made it great for getting a chance to read about the buildings uninterrupted. Leading up to the temple’s Hozomon gate was a large shopping area with a lot of food. An average of 30 million people visit this temple every year–so expect it to be quite crowded!
Recommendation: 4/5 It’s amazing to me how well-kept the temples and shrines are in Tokyo, particularly looking at the fact the structure was built in 645. Yes, there have been many reconstructions and adding to the buildings done, but it’s still an amazing feat that it still stands. It’s hard for me to get used to large crowds of people, but I found that I was personally more okay with it here. There would probably never be a day when it isn’t completely crowded!