Osu Kannon Temple: Japan’s rich history inside

Osu Kannon, Nagoya’s Naka distict, downtown of Nagoya, hides a rich historical culture inside. A perfect place for get lost between the ancient history and the spiritual atmosphere.
Must-stop spot before entering the Osu’s shopping district.

A little bit of history

A Buddhist temple originally built in Gifu Prefecture. It was moved to its current location by the shogun Tokugawa Ieyasu in 1612 after the original temple had been repeatedly damaged by severe flooding.

The main object of worship in the temple is a wooden statue of Kannon, the goddess of mercy. Under the main hall of the temple is the Shinpukuji Library, which contains more than 15,000 classical Japanese and Chinese texts. Among these texts are several national treasures and important cultural properties, including the oldest copy of the Kojiki, a chronicle of the early history of Japan, including its mythological origins.

Osu Kannon Temple

A walk through the temple

Take a walk around the temple square. Go up the stairs and purificate your soul with the smoke of the incense.

Osu Kannon Temple

Osu Kannon Temple

Osu Kannon Temple

Osu Kannon Temple

Osu Kannon Temple

If you have a 5 or 50 yen you can try to make a wish in front of the altar. These are the steps I follow when I go to ask for my wishes:

  1. Gently toss a coin into the box in front of you. The amount of money does not matter.
  2. Clap twice, with your left hand slightly in front.
  3. Pay your respects, remembering to thank the gods as well.
  4. With your hands together and your eyes closed, strongly ask for your wish
  5. Deeply bow once … and that’s it.

Osu Kannon Temple - Praying

You can try your luck by taking a piece of paper from the “omikuji”. This “omikuji” as the horoscope, will tell your fortune: how it will anger you personally, in love, in money and in health. If it is not very good luck you can hang it in a zone enabled to hang them, just leaving behind your bad luck. It is written in Japanese, so you can ask a Japanese friend to read it to you or keep it as a souvenir.
As in any temple, you can buy an “omamori” or an amulet for good luck or to protect you in general.

Osu Kannon Temple

Osu Kannon Temple

Osu Kannon Temple

If you turn around you will see the view from above of the square and surroundings.

Osu’s Karakuri doll

It’s located near the temple.
It’s one of the symbols of Aichi culture and industry. When the clock sets the time, the music starts and the dolls move telling a story.
Hours: 11:00, 13:00, 15:00, 17:00, 18:30

Osu Kannon Temple - Karakuri Doll

Osu Kannon Temple - Karakuri Doll

Travel tips

On the 18th and 28th of every month is held a flea market on the temple grounds where around 60 stalls participate. These stalls sell everything from souvenirs and antiques to clothing and second-hand items.

Just right next to the temple is the entrance to Osu Shopping Arcade. There are many stores specialize in electronics, cosplay, anime, idol goods and more.

How to get there

The best easy way toget there is to take the subway.
You hace two options:
1.From Osu Kannon Station on the Tsurumai Line (3 min. walk from exit 2) .
2.From Kamimaezu Statiton on the Meijo Line.
Another alternative is walk from Sakae’s center. It takes about 25 minutes walk.

General Information

Osu, Naka-ku, Nagoya

Opening Hours
Always open

No closing dates

Admission Prices

Photography by Marina Llopis Nieto

Photographer currently living in UK but working around the world. Passionate about art, travel and surfing.
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