With over 30 million visitors a year, Senso-ji holds a special place in local hearts. Otherwise known as Asakusa Kannon, Senso-ji is metropolitan Tokyo’s oldest temple and dedicated to Kannon, the bodhisattva of compassion. The principal statue of Kannon enshrined in the temple is said to have been saving worshippers ever since first appearing 1400 years ago when – as legend has it – fishermen discovered it in the Sumida river. Apart from the Nitenmon gate and the Denboin residence, most of the temple was destroyed during Allied bombing raids in 1945, with the main temple building and five-storied pagoda rebuilt after the war. In a local example of corporate philanthropy, the main Kaminarimon Gate – famous for its giant red lantern – was actually restored in 1960 through a donation from Konosuke Matsushita (Panasonic’s founder). If you fancy a snack heading to or from the temple, shops lining the ‘Nakamise’ approach sell popular local specialities. Crispy rice senbei ‘Kaminari okoshi,’ age-manju (deep fried cakes with a red-bean filling) and ningyo-yaki (cakes moulded into special shapes, also commonly filled with red-bean) may abate your hunger, but it’s also possible to part with your hard-earned yen on the many traditional trinkets and souvenirs on offer.
|Venue name:||Sensoji Temple|
2-3-1 Asakusa, Taito-ku
|Transport:||Asakusa Station (Tobu Skytree, Ginza, Asakusa lines)|
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