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Yudonoyama Dainichibo (Shonai No. 9)

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4.2 (446)

Nyūdō-11 Ōami, Tsuruoka, Yamagata 997-0531, Japan

The temple holds one of Japan’s 16 self-mummified monks or living Buddhas (sokushinbutsu), most of which are spread across the Tohoku region in Yamagata and Fukushima prefectures.

hourglassDuration: 00h45min

phone+81 235-54-6301
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clockOpening hours

Mondays: 9:00 AM – 4:00 PM

Tuesdays: 9:00 AM – 4:00 PM

Wednesdays: 9:00 AM – 4:00 PM

Thursdays: 9:00 AM – 4:00 PM

Fridays: 9:00 AM – 4:00 PM

Saturdays: 9:00 AM – 4:00 PM

Sundays: 9:00 AM – 4:00 PM

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4.2
446 review(s)
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Ohayō Phil a year ago

I prefer to be in a quiet room and just take in the history of this place I’ve read in silence. There’s also a lot of asking for money—3x minimum to be precise—tickets to enter, to light a candle and another ¥1000 for the “amulet”. It honestly felt like it has become a business instead of a sacred place.

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Tim Bunting (Kiwi Yamabushi) 2 years ago

Ryusuiji Dainichibo Temple is one of the most important temples in the whole Dewa Sanzan area. As home to a Sokushinbutsu, the temple was one of only two to stay true to its Shingon Buddhist roots when the other Dewa Sanzan changed allegiances multiple times over the centuries. The temple is covered in Buddhist relics, including a hallway featuring many famous Buddha statues.

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Gabor S. (賀慕流) 3 years ago

Stunning place. Visiting here was a lifetime experience. Not only a very famous sokushinbutsu (即身仏) is kept here and on display but the visit is a full experience with a guided tour, explanation and a short Buddhist service during which we get cleansed by a monk. Fantastic experience!

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Russell Taylor 5 years ago

A fascinating place to visit in a very atmospheric location. The monks at the temple are very welcoming and accommodating. They gently guide you through the history of both the temple and also of the process involved in the procedure that the sokushinbutsu go through. If you don’t speak any Japanese or have someone who can translate for you then you may struggle with some of the terminology used but it’s still a very unique and interesting place. Be advised that in winter it can be impossible to access this area due to the weather conditions. Very deep snow plus a very steep and narrow access road can prevent you from reaching the temple in winter months.

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Fredrik Norman 5 years ago

Going to the country side and seeing the mummified priests was both interesting and left me with a feeling of serenity. Furthermore, everyone I meet was friendly and tried their best to explain the meaning of the sacred mountain both in English and in Japanese. Getting there was easy as well with buses going from Tsuruoka and other smaller cities. Moreover, walking from the bus station took only around 10-15 minutes, and with vending machines all over I didn't have to be afraid of dehydration. Going back to Tsuruoka, however, was more troublesome with no buses going at all (even though the tourist centre said so), upon I had to get a cab. So the place is worth a visit due to how esoteric it is but please make sure to arrange means of transportation.