If you’d like to see a fire ceremony, make a wish at the dragon fountain, and say a prayer in the hall of the glow-in-the-dark saints, this is the temple for you!
Fire ceremonies are held five times daily (at 9:00, 11:00, 13:00, 15:00 and 17:00). Let’s take off our shoes (we can carry them in one of the plastic bags provided), then sneak into the side gallery and watch from the back, where we can look down on the altar area. The ceremony takes 30-60 minutes, and is filled with taiko drumming, chanting, the blowing of conch shells and the tossing of wooden prayer sticks into a bonfire that blazes up quite spectacularly in front of the altar.
Note: It’s strictly forbidden to take photos and videos during the ceremonies, because they are actual religious services. I know it’s tempting, but please don’t be That Tourist. (The photos I’ve included here are icky and fuzzy because I got them from the temple’s website.)
Afterwards, let’s go into the big modern cube next door, the one with the Fudo sutra written all over the outside in giant Sanskrit characters.
Back outside, let’s not leave before we make a wish at the dragon fountain!
Here’s more to do in the neighborhood, while you’re there:
And just for fun, here are the eleven strangest shrines in Tokyo, with all the inside scoop on the resident gods’ superpowers
Click here for more
Jonelle Patrick is the author of five novels set in Japan
The Last Tea Bowl Thief was chosen as an Editor’s Pick for Best Mystery, Thriller & Suspense on Amazon
“A fascinating mix of history and mystery.” —Booklist
Know someone who’s planning a trip to Japan? If you think they’d enjoy this temple, share it!
And if you’d like to find fun stuff spicing up your email from time to time, subscribe to The Tokyo Guide I Wish I’d Had, and I’ll send you all the hidden treasures, travel hacks and best of the best, the minute I post them!
It’s easy: Scroll down to the subscribe button, enter your email, and push the button. You can unsubscribe at any time, of course, and I promise: no ads and no sharing of your information EVER.