The entrance is easy to miss: a small, red arched bridge leads from the narrow shopping street to the temple complex. You follow a path along the river to the large Nio-Mon gate that marks the real entrance to Murouji Temple. Stone steps lead up through a cedar forest, past a series of small temples, drawing you ever closer to the main buildings.
Further up, you come to the beautifully detailed main hall, built in 1308, containing fine examples of Buddhist carving, including the Twelve Heavenly Generals. Kanjodo Hall is worth visiting for its seated Kannon figure carved in the Heian era (794 - 1185), renowned for its gentle countenance. Deeper into the forest, you find the structure that draws so many visitors: a beautiful five-storey pagoda made of red-painted cypress wood. Just 16 metres high, it stands at the top of a flight of stone steps, popular in autumn for the blazing colours and in early summer when it is framed by azaleas and rhododendrons.
Known as “Nyonin-Koya” or Koyasan for women, Murouji Temple was built in the 9th century and was one of the rare temples that welcomed women at the time. It is still very popular with female visitors. Even in summer, the complex is completely shaded and feels refreshingly cool. There are buses twice an hour from the nearest train station, or you can combine a visit with a hike through Murou Art Forest for a full day.
Last update: 2017-12-25
- Venue Details & Access Info
78 Murou, Uda
From Kintetsu Muroguchiono Station:
- Take a bus bound for Murouji-mae and alight at the end of the line.
Related Events Murouji Rhododendron Festival
Murouji Temple Autumn Leaves by Night
- 室生寺 Murouji Temple
- address 宇陀市室生78 78 Murou, Uda
- Opening Time & Admissions
Apr 1 - Nov 30: 8:30 - 17:00
Dec 1 - Mar 31: 9:00 - 16:00
Open all year round
*Group discount available
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Available Foreign Languages
Information in English
Information in Chinese
Information in Korean
- Contact Details