Kai Zenko-ji Temple in Yamanashi

Kai Zenko-ji Temple

Kai Zenko-ji Temple is a Buddhist temple located in the Yamanashi city of Yamanashi, Japan. It is one of the oldest and most revered temples in the region, with a history dating back over 1,300 years.


The temple was founded in 744 by the monk Gyoki, who was a disciple of the famous Buddhist monk Kukai. Over the centuries, the temple has undergone numerous renovations and additions, and today it is a sprawling complex of buildings and gardens.

What to See

One of the main attractions of Kai Zenko-ji Temple is the main hall, which houses a statue of Amida Buddha that is said to have been carved by Gyoki himself. The statue is considered to be one of the most important Buddhist artifacts in Japan, and is only shown to the public once every six years.

Other notable features of the temple include the beautiful gardens, which are particularly stunning in the spring when the cherry blossoms are in bloom. There are also several smaller shrines and temples within the complex, each with its own unique history and significance.

Getting There

Kai Zenko-ji Temple is located in the city of Yamanashi, which is about two hours west of Tokyo by train. The nearest train station is Yamanashi Station, which is about a 15-minute walk from the temple. The approximate latitude and longitude of the temple are 35.7022° N, 138.6764° E.

Visiting Tips

  • Be sure to wear comfortable shoes, as there is a lot of walking involved in exploring the temple complex.
  • If you are visiting during the cherry blossom season, be prepared for crowds and book your accommodations in advance.
  • Respect the temple's rules and customs, such as removing your shoes before entering certain buildings and refraining from taking photographs in some areas.
  • Consider hiring a guide or taking a tour to learn more about the history and significance of the temple.


Kai Zenko-ji Temple is a must-see destination for anyone interested in Japanese history and culture. With its ancient architecture, beautiful gardens, and important Buddhist artifacts, it is a truly unique and memorable experience.