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Chuson-ji Temple

中尊寺(平泉町)

Chuson-ji was built as the foundation of a peaceful Buddhism-based realm. After decades of warfare ravaged Tohoku ( northern Honshu ) in the late eleventh century, the only major power left standing was Fujiwara no Kiyohira, founder of the Oshu Fujiwara line and Hiraizumi. War-weary Kiyohira began his temple on this site in the early twelfth century, building a complex of halls and pagodas to pacify and memorialize all those who had died in battle, friend and foe alike. In 1124, he dedicated the Konjikido, the golden hall that is Chuson-ji’s crown jewel and a Japanese National Treasure. The Konjikido represents the pinnacle of Heian ( 794-1192 ) artistic achievement, and one of more than 3000 National Treasures and Important Cultural Properties housed here. Many of these are on display in Chuson-ji’s museum, the Sankozo, located next to the Konjikido.

This region was a major gold producer, as attested by the Konjikido. In fact, the radiant sparkle of the golden hall in the days before it was covered by a protective outer building ( Sheath Hall ) may have inspired Marco Polo to write of “islands of gold and silver” in his Travels.

VENUE DETAILS

Address
202 Aza Koromonoseki, Hiraizumi
029-4102 岩手県西磐井郡平泉町平泉衣関202
Hours
8:00-17:00; ( 8:30-16:30, November 10-March )
Regular holidays
Open every day
Addmission
adults 800 yen; high school students 500 yen; junior high school students 300 yen; elementary school students 200 yen, Group discount: 10 % off for groups of 30 or more; 20 % off for groups of 100 or more
Other
New hours starting March 2011: 8:30-17:00, March 1-November 3 8:30-16:30, November 4-end of February Admission tickets will not be available after 10 minutes prior to the closing time.
Access 1
Loop Bus from JR Hiraizumi Station Hiraizumi Loop Bus "Run-Run" ( early April to late November ) Get on at Hiraizumi Station Boarding Area 1 Get off at Hiraizumi About 3 min. 0191-23-4250 ( Iwateken Kotsu Ichinoseki Office )
Access 2
Bus from JR Ichinoseki Station Kokudo Minami Line Get on at Ichinoseki Station Boarding Area 10 Get off at Chuson-ji About 22 min. 0191-23-4250 ( Iwateken Kotsu Ichinoseki Office )
Access 3
Taxi Swallow Tour 9:00-17:00 ( May-October ) ; 9:00-16:00 ( November-April ) 70 bicycles available 0191-46-5086 Bicycle Rental "Kaze" 9:00-17:00 47 bicycles available 090-4041-5736
Access 4
Bicycle Rental About 3 min. from JR Hiraizumi Station
Access 5
Car About 5 min. from Hiraizumi-Maesawa IC

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