Nagoya Temples & Shrines: Banshoji
Banshoji Temple 万松寺
Banshoji, a Soto Zen sect temple of Japanese Buddhism, is built in to a modern building on Banshoji Dori, a short walk from Kamimaezu Station on the Tsurumai and Meijo lines of the Nagoya subway.
Banshoji was built by Oda Nobuhide, the father of local warlord Oda Nobunaga in 1540. Banshoji Temple served as a residence for Kato Kiyomasa (1562-1611), the principal architect of Nagoya Castle during its construction.
Banshoji was moved to its present location in 1610.
The original temple was destroyed in World War II but was reconstructed after the war. The five-story main hall (honden) was completed in the 1990's. The third floor of the Honden contains a modern crypt, with more traditional ossuaries in the basement and on the fourth floor. The roof has the temple bell and worshippers can come to ring it on New Year's Day.
The compact temple has a number of Inari fox statues in a small rockery at the back through a tunnel decorated with lanterns. At the front of the temple, where many stalls are located, is a water purification font or temizuya with water coming from the trunk of a stone elephant.
At 10am, 12pm, 2pm, 4pm and 6pm there is an elaborate karakuri (mechanical puppet) display complete with music and smoke showing events from the life of Oda Nobunaga. See the video below to get an idea of the event.
Banshoji Temple hosts a flea market on the 28th of each month and its grounds are usually full of stalls selling various goods on most days. The main Osu Kannon flea market is on the 18th of each month.
Access - how to get to Banshoji Temple in Nagoya
Banshoji is a short distance from Kamimaezu Station on the Tsurumai and Meijo lines of the Nagoya subway. Banshoji Temple is reached through the passageway of Banshoji Building.
29-12 Osu 3-chome
Tel: 052 262 0735
Google map of Banshoji
Banshoji Temple mechanical puppet (karakuri) display