Chuson-ji Temple
Chuson-ji Temple
4.5
8:30 AM - 4:30 PM
Monday
8:30 AM - 4:30 PM
Tuesday
8:30 AM - 4:30 PM
Wednesday
8:30 AM - 4:30 PM
Thursday
8:30 AM - 4:30 PM
Friday
8:30 AM - 4:30 PM
Saturday
8:30 AM - 4:30 PM
Sunday
8:30 AM - 4:30 PM
About
Duration: 1-2 hours
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Top ways to experience Chuson-ji Temple and nearby attractions

Most Recent: Reviews ordered by most recent publish date in descending order.

Detailed Reviews: Reviews ordered by recency and descriptiveness of user-identified themes such as wait time, length of visit, general tips, and location information.


4.5
4.5 of 5 bubbles940 reviews
Excellent
478
Very good
368
Average
78
Poor
14
Terrible
2

EvY03tw
24 contributions
2.0 of 5 bubbles
Nov 2016 • Family
It could be fun to see these historical temples if we hadn't traveled much in Japan. They looked similar as other temples in Japan with more expensive tickets.
Written December 2, 2016
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews as part of our industry-leading trust & safety standards. Read our transparency report to learn more.

Gemini6_tadvisor
Lyon, France407 contributions
4.0 of 5 bubbles
Aug 2018 • Couples
As we had Japan Rail Pass, we decided to visit this well known temple (world heritage) in a one day trip from Tokyo.

We took one of Tohoku shinkansen "Hayabusa", leaving at around 8:00 and we arrived at Ichinoseki station a little after 10:00. From there we tool a local train for Morioka to Hiraizumi station, which is the 2nd station from Ichinoseki. (Local trains are not so frequent.).

Once we arrived at Hiraizumi, we took a one day pass (500 yen) for loop bus (every 15 minutes at week-end, if we remenber correctly), and we took the loop bus to Chusonji.

Once we got off the bus, we had to walk up and up the hill among beautiful trees about 20 or 30 minutes to the top where the main temple is located. By the way, it was rather painful because of hot weather that day. On the way up, there are several small temples you can also visit. On the top, the old main temple and Konjiki-do (Gold colour pavillion), which is now inside of a modern concrete building maybe for conservation purpose, as well as the museum, where you can buy various souvenir items.

After the visit to the top, we walked down, and had a lunch in one of the restaurants. We took Wanko-soba (1700 yen). Wanko-soba is noodles served in many small bowls. We had 18 bowls, but we heard that in some other restaurants with more expensive Wanko-soba, as soon as you finish, they serve more bowls. So, it is all you can eat!!

Globally, the place is very pretty with beautiful nature, and is not too crowded with mass tourists. So, we think it is a good option if you want to go the north of Japan.
Written August 16, 2018
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews as part of our industry-leading trust & safety standards. Read our transparency report to learn more.

Favzoz
Jacksonville, FL25 contributions
5.0 of 5 bubbles
Nov 2011 • Solo
I visited Chusonji Temple and the Hiraizumi area when the autumn leaves were starting to show their colors. It is believed to be founded in 850 C.E. and rebuilt during the 12th century and is the head temple of the Tendai Sect. It was founded by the Fujiwara clan (Fujiwara no Kiyohara). The Konjiki-Do or Golden Hall is a beautiful building. Back in the day, the Hiraizumi area was a leading producer of gold. The Golden Hall is all wood and covered in gold leaf, inlaid with mother-of-pearl. It was completely rebuilt in the 1960s-you can only view the front of it because it is covered by clear acrylic panels. It was very crowded and busy the day we were there, maybe contributed to by the fact that there was a Fall Festival going on at the temple. The building originally stood in the open air, but is now completely enclosed by the building you go into to view it. There are examples of the mother of pearl inlay and more details in the museum, which is well worth viewing, to gain some insight. The Golden Hall is a mausoleum and the remains of the Fujiwaras are housed there. Chusonji is a beautiful, serene setting allowing for contemplation, observation, and a bit of tranquility from daily life. I enjoyed all the Buddhist art and history. I went there with relatives and family members and one of our party was 85 yrs. old. It was a bit rough walking for the senior person, but manageable. There are lots and lots of stairs, as is the norm in Japan. The temple is on a mountain, so there is a lot of uphil/downhill walking involved. I enjoyed every aspect of my visit there and would go again. This is a great place to also learn a little bit more about the Heian Period of Japan, when the Japanese Imperial Court was at the height of power and the actual rulers of the period were the Fujiwaras. A lot of great art and poetry came out of that period, too-one example is the famous Tale of Genji by Murasaki Shikibu. The March 11, 2011 earthquake didn't impact the temple structure itself; it's easy to get there by Tohoku Shinkansen and local trains to the Ichinoseki/Hiraizumi area. We traveled from Tokyo and stayed in a Japanese Inn in Hiraizumi and viewed the temple and surrounds in two days. It is about 2-3 hrs. from Tokyo by bullet train. The Inn we stayed at had an onsen, which I thoroughly enjoyed and the food was excellent! You can tour the temple in a couple hours or so. I personally would allot much more time simply because I really enjoy visiting Japan's temples and I think one needs to take time to get the full benefit of such visits.
Written November 16, 2011
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews as part of our industry-leading trust & safety standards. Read our transparency report to learn more.

John
Leavenworth, KS1,282 contributions
5.0 of 5 bubbles
Nov 2018
Plan on at least three hours to see the Chusonji temple complex and make sure you go into the museum as well as going into the Konjikido. The walk up to these two buidlings is through a beautiful park ascending to the buildings through a cyprus and maple forest. In November the maples are a brilliant panoply of reds yellows and oranges. If you are old like me, you may find yourself winded and you may stop a few times along the way. There are eating places and tasteful souvenir shops as you ascend. Visited 26 November 2018.
Written October 31, 2019
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews as part of our industry-leading trust & safety standards. Read our transparency report to learn more.

Chuzaa
Vancouver, Canada3,487 contributions
5.0 of 5 bubbles
Apr 2017 • Couples
We walked up from the parking lot at the foot of the hill that had the Chuson-ji Temple complex. It took nearly a little more than 20 minutes through hundreds of giant Japanese cedar (sugi) trees.

After seeing the main building of the Chuson-ji Temple, we walked further for about five minutes to get to the Konjiki-do Hall (Golden Hall). The admission was JPY800 per person for the Golden Hall and the Treasure House (Sanko-zo).

The Golden Hal of the Chuson-ji Temple is a small (5.5 meters x 5.5 meters), but marvelous example of Northern Fujiwara clan’s spiritual and cultural achievement in the late Heian Period (794-1185). The building was completed in 1124 by the first lord Kiyohira. This small wooden prayer hall with the main deity of Amida (Amitābha) and many Buddhist figures is painted with Japanese lacquer (urushi) and entirely covered with gold leaf, except for the wooden shingles for the roof. The hall is also the mausoleum for the key Northern Fujiwara family members (Kiyohira, Motohira, Hidehira and Yasuhira). Though it’s been nearly nine hundred years since the completion, much of the gold leaf is still there and it is easy to imagine the original glory of the Golden Hall.

The fragile structure is kept in the air conditioned concrete building (built in 1965) and we can see the Golden Hall only through the glass wall. No photography is allowed here. They consider that the Golden Hall had been left outdoor only for a short while after its completion and then covered by a simple sheltering structure over it. In 1288 during the Kamakura Period (1185-1333), a permanent sheltering hall was built to cover the entire original building. This Kamakura Period building is seen about 100 meters away from the Golden Hall. As it is also a unique wooden structure, it is designated as an Important Cultural Property.

It is highly recommended to also visit the Sanko-zo Treasure House which is where the reception is located after visiting the Golden Hall. It shows many original Buddhist images that were initially kept at various prayer halls within the Chuson-ji Temple complex and various artifacts. One of the most interesting pieces shown here is a Buddhist scripture written in gold and silver ink.
Written May 31, 2017
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews as part of our industry-leading trust & safety standards. Read our transparency report to learn more.

ZhaoXiuMei
Singapore, Singapore5,113 contributions
4.0 of 5 bubbles
Oct 2019
The Temple is made up of a few buildings, surrounded by forest.
To reach the temple,one has to walk up a slope, which is equiped with rope and anti-slip feature. There is also a lookout pavilion midway to the temple.
The place is peaceful and serene.
Written November 7, 2019
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews as part of our industry-leading trust & safety standards. Read our transparency report to learn more.

MarkKwok
Vancouver136 contributions
3.0 of 5 bubbles
Aug 2019
I went as a day trip from Sendai. There is a steep hill to climb to get to the grounds. There is an entrance fee of 800 yen to Konjikido (a hall covered in gold) and the Treasure Hall. I wasn't too impressed with either.
Written September 17, 2019
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews as part of our industry-leading trust & safety standards. Read our transparency report to learn more.

maritora
Tokyo Prefecture, Japan4,665 contributions
5.0 of 5 bubbles
May 2018 • Couples
Hiraizumi is a town where Kiyohira Fujiwara, who experienced the hardships of war, had developed. When he was young, he experienced a fight between relatives. His wife and son were killed by his brother at the time. After he finished all the battle, He wanted to see the world of Buddha so he built many Buddhist temples in the town. The monks he invited to build the Buddhist temples brought a lot of knowledge so that Hiraizumi could develop it better. The most famous temple is not the main one, Chuson-ji. It is called Konjikido (the Golden Hall). Now it is covered by another building for protection. I don't have any photos because taking photos is prohibited so I put some here from a brochure. Gold leaves envelope the wall and the roof. From the decoration, I felt not only the beauty but also his loneliness and the kind of prayers that he wanted for the pure and peaceful land. The entrance fee is 800 yen per person. It is far from the station and takes 25 minutes on foot. There is a free round-trip bus called "Junkai Bus Runrun", that's convenient to use. The temple provides English and o Spanish voice guides.
Written April 4, 2019
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews as part of our industry-leading trust & safety standards. Read our transparency report to learn more.

Tony P
London, UK53 contributions
5.0 of 5 bubbles
Apr 2016 • Couples
still not overwhelmed by tourists! so many buildings on this site with space to walk and relax. so far the best religious site I've visited in Japan after about 40 years of travels - better than Kyoto and Nikko for me - maybe Nara comes close.
Written May 4, 2016
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews as part of our industry-leading trust & safety standards. Read our transparency report to learn more.

HiroSKMT
Macau, China10,403 contributions
5.0 of 5 bubbles
Jan 2016 • Solo
Be prepared to walk up a long steep slope before arriving the place. The Temple also shows the ancient stuffs used in the past in which were made in an amazing design and technique. The Golden Temple itself is peaceful, fantastic and relaxing. It is simply a treasure and nice to see that it was not destroyed during wars and it is protected well.
Written January 21, 2016
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews as part of our industry-leading trust & safety standards. Read our transparency report to learn more.

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