Hōzōmon Gate, Tokyo

Hōzōmon Gate, Tokyo

The Hōzōmon is the inner gate of Senso-ji Temple in Asakusa, where valuable temple artifacts are stored. This gate consists of two floors, with the temple's treasures located on the upper level.

Originally constructed in 942 by Taira no Kinmasa, a military commander at the time, the Hōzōmon was built as an expression of gratitude to Senso-ji Temple after Kinmasa achieved his goal of becoming the Lord of Tokyo through his prayers. Unfortunately, the original gate was destroyed by a fire in 1631. It was later rebuilt by Tokugawa Lemitsu, the 3rd Tokugawa Shogun, and this reconstructed gate stood for 300 years until it was damaged during World War II bombings. The current Hōzōmon is a modern structure made of steel-reinforced materials designed to resist fire, ensuring the safety of the temple's precious items.

The Hōzōmon features two impressive 5.5-meter-tall statues of Nios, or guardian deities of Lord Buddha. Additionally, it boasts three large paper lanterns, with one notably large and prominent red chochin lantern donated by the residents of Funamachi in 2003. This generous donation marked the 400th anniversary of the Edo period. Flanking the gate on either side are two hefty copper lanterns, each weighing 1000 kilograms.

The treasures housed on the upper floor of the Hōzōmon include a copy of the Lotus Sutra, a revered Japanese national treasure, and the Issai Kyo, a comprehensive collection of Buddhist scriptures classified as an important cultural property of Japan. At the rear of the gate, you'll find two straw sandals known as the Waraji.

Want to visit this sight? Check out these Self-Guided Walking Tours in Tokyo. Alternatively, you can download the mobile app "GPSmyCity: Walks in 1K+ Cities" from Apple App Store or Google Play Store. The app turns your mobile device to a personal tour guide and it works offline, so no data plan is needed when traveling abroad.

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Hōzōmon Gate on Map

Sight Name: Hōzōmon Gate
Sight Location: Tokyo, Japan (See walking tours in Tokyo)
Sight Type: Religious
Guide(s) Containing This Sight:

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