The temple of a hundred colors, with a giant’s sandals at the gate
Hyakusaiji Temple, also known as the “temple of a hundred colors,” is a must-visit destination in Shiga, japan. Located in Hyakusaiji-cho, Higashiomi-shi, Shiga-ken, this ancient temple is renowned for its vibrant fall foliage and unique attractions. Don’t miss the opportunity to see the famous gigantic sandals and explore the beautiful Tenka-Enbo-Meien garden.
How to Get There
Getting to Hyakusaiji Temple is relatively easy. You can reach the temple by train and then take a taxi, or use a special shuttle bus during peak leaf season in November. If you choose to travel by train, start your journey from Yokaichi Station on the Omi Tetsudo Line. From there, it is a 20-minute taxi ride to the temple. The Omi Tetsudo Line is accessible from Maibara on the Tokaido Shinkansen. Alternatively, you can also connect to the JR Biwako Line at Omi Hachiman and Hikone stations.
During the peak leaf season in November, the Koto Sanzan Shuttle Bus operates between three temples (Hyakusaiji, Saimyoji, and Kongorinji) and Hikone and Yokaichi stations on the Omi Tetsudo Line. You can start the tour at either Hikone or Yokaichi station and enjoy a convenient and scenic journey to Hyakusaiji Temple.
Shiga’s oldest temple blazes with color
Founded in 606, Hyakusaiji Temple holds significant historical and cultural value. It is the oldest of Shiga’s three famous Koto Sanzan temples and one of the oldest temples in all of Japan. The Koto Sanzan temples, including Hyakusaiji, Saimyoji, and Kongorinji, are perched atop three mountains on the eastern side of Lake Biwa. These temples belong to the Tendai sect of Buddhism and attract numerous visitors seeking spiritual enlightenment and cultural experiences.
The magnificent fall foliage
One of the main highlights of Hyakusaiji Temple is its magnificent fall foliage. The temple is known as one of the official 100 best spots to view autumn leaves in Japan. The surrounding landscape transforms into a kaleidoscope of vibrant colors during the autumn season, creating a picturesque and serene atmosphere. The water garden within the temple grounds is particularly famous for its stunning fall foliage. To enhance the experience, the temple organizes a special “light up” event at night, allowing visitors to witness the beauty of the illuminated autumn leaves.
The main hall
The main hall of Hyakusaiji Temple is an Important Cultural Property and a designated National Historic Ruin. Stepping into the main hall is like stepping back in time, immersing yourself in the rich history and heritage of the temple. The architectural design and intricate details of the main hall showcase the craftsmanship of the past, leaving visitors in awe of its beauty and significance.
The temple grounds also feature various other structures and areas worth exploring. From the Niomon Gate adorned with a pair of massive straw sandals to the Tenka-Enbo-Meien garden, there is something for everyone to appreciate and enjoy at Hyakusaiji Temple.
In conclusion, Hyakusaiji Temple is a remarkable destination that offers a unique blend of history, culture, and natural beauty. Whether you are a history enthusiast, a nature lover, or a spiritual seeker, this temple has something to offer. Plan your visit during the fall season to witness the breathtaking display of colors and immerse yourself in the tranquility of this ancient temple. Don’t forget to explore the surrounding areas and make the most of your trip to Shiga, Japan.
Address And Maps Location:
323 Hyakusaiji-cho, Higashiomi-shi, Shiga-ken