It was our last day in Fukuoka. Our flight was still in the evening and we were figuring out what to do. My companion Shiela decided to explore Canal City (essentially a huge shopping mall) while I travelled by my lonesome on a JR train to see the giant Buddha of Nanzoin.
Kido-Nanzoinmae is a sleepy town located about 20 minutes by train from Fukuoka. Most people overlook this in their itinerary when visiting the Kyushu islands of Japan (of which Fukuoka is a part). Am so glad I took the time because the surroundings of the Nanzoin temple were so refreshing and the great reclining Buddha was amazing, especially its size.
This was the entrance to the temple. Note the cherry blossoms 🙂
Lots of statues along the way. People were dropping coins and saying prayers. I did too, even if I’m a Catholic
Since the temple was located on a hill, there was moderate climbing involved. But I saw mostly old people just the same.
All right. I even saw this mini waterfall
And a koi pond with a little structure housing a little Buddha….
This figure is bigger than it looks in the picture and I don’t know why he has this expression…
Nanzoin Temple is quite big and very well-maintained. I wouldn’t have been able to find where the great reclining Buddha was if I didn’t befriend this kind Japanese lady who showed me the way.
We had to go through a tunnel which had these interesting figures on the wall, sculpted out of wood…
And when we emerged out of the tunnel, there was the Buddha in all its size and splendor. It was a surreal, fascinating experience….
Its weight of 300 tons and length of 41 meters make it the biggest bronze statue of a daibutsu (big Buddha) in Japan. Locally, the Buddha is known as Nehanzo or Nirvana and is so called because the reclining position portrays him at the moment of death or about to enter Nirvana.
The Buddha’s feet dwarfed me in size….
Some people visit the temple to bring them luck. Story goes that a temple priest won the lottery after laying his ticket next to the Buddha. A few others have also won since then.
To go to Nanzoin temple, take JR Sasaguri Line in Hakata Station, Fukuoka then alight in Kido-Nanzoinmae station