Itineraries

You may have heard that Japan has two major religions, Buddhism and Shintoism. If you have ever wondered how these two religions can coexist, joining this tour may be an opportunity for you to find an answer.

In this tour, you will visit Fukagawa Fudo-do, a Buddhist temple, and Tomioka Hachimangu, a Shinto shrine. Over the centuries, they both have been popular tourist spots and are also worshipped as the guardians of the neighborhood. With our guides, you will see and experience the characteristics of and differences between Buddhism and Shintoism including the different worship manners and practices. Even if you are not interested in Japanese religion, we still recommend this tour because Fukagawa Fudo-do and Tomioka Hachimangu have special and unique features compared to other temples and shrines that may satisfy your curiosity.

Fukagawa Fudo-do Temple

Fukagawa Fudo-do is a temple dedicated to Fudo-myoo, the god of fire. As you approach the temple, you will notice the innovative mantra design in Sanskrit letters on the exterior wall of the Main Hall.

Inside the Main Hall, you will experience a mysterious fire ritual, known as the Goma Rite. It is a secret practice of "Shingon Esoteric Buddhism" to purify people's earthly desires with fire and pray for their wishes to be granted. In the ritual, wood offerings that represent people's earthly desires are burnt by the fire, which in turn represents the wisdom of the deity, Fudo-myoo. The powerful sounds of the chanted mantra, the Japanese drums and the conch shell trumpets make your experience all the more unique.

Also, if you have an interest in art, please enjoy the statues and paintings at the Buddhist art gallery in the Inner Hall.

Tomioka Hachimangu Shrine

Tomioka Hachimangu is a beautiful shrine with a history of over 350 years. It is dedicated to Hachiman god, the god of war.

You will find various monuments to the sumo wrestlers there, including the Monument to Grand Champions (Yokozuna), because this shrine is known as the birthplace of the professional sumo tournaments. At the end of the 17th century (in 1684), the very first sumo tournament for the purposes of fundraising for temples and shrines was held in the precinct of this shrine.

If you like Japanese festivals, you shouldn't miss the biggest and most elaborately decorated portable shrines in Japan, displayed at the side of the approach to the shrine. The Fukagawa Hachiman Festival, one of the three major festivals in Edo (the old name for Tokyo), is also held here.

Course Date & Time:

The last Saturday of every month, 14:00 – 16:00 (2 hours), except August and December. The date and time are negotiable.

Meeting Place:

The Red Gate of the Fukagawa Fudo-do temple just outside No. 1 exit of Monzen-nakacho Station (T12) on the Tokyo Metro Tozai Line.
NOTE: If you come to Monzen-Nakacho station by Toei Subway Oedo Line (E15), click here.

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