Fukagawa is a neighborhood in Tokyo's Koto ward, just 3km east of the Imperial Palace and Tokyo Station. Fukugawa has a large collection of shrines and temples. Among them, Fukagawa Fudoson temple and Tomioka Hachimangu shrine are very popular.
Fukagawa Fudoson temple
Fukagawa Fudoson temple is a Buddhist temple located near the Monzennakacho station of subway and a branch temple of Narita-san Shinshoji temple near Narita Airport.
It features a special Buddhist ritual called Goma firing ritual. Many monks perform the ritual using drums, fire, and chanting. People’s prayers are offered to the old statue called Fudomyoo or Immovable Wisdom King in front of the fire.
The ritual is usually held five times a day, at 9 a.m., 11 a.m., 1 p.m., 3 p.m. and 5 p.m. Anyone can see the ritual for free, so it is worth attending.
In side of the main hall, there are various displays of artistic statues and paintings relating Buddhism. They are so beautiful that you would feel in another world.
They are very much gorgeous. If you like to see Buddhist art, this place is ideal.
Tomioka Hachimangu shrine
Tomioka Hachimangu Shrine is a large beautiful shrine located next to the Fukagawa Fudoson temple.
Shinto is indigenous religion of Japan and is said to have more than 80,000 shrines all over Japan. There are many kinds of shrines. Hachimangu is one of them.
Hachimangu shrines are dedicated to the god of battle, Yawata no Kami, who was revered by samurai worriers. There are said to be more than 10,000 Hachimangu shrines in Japan.
Tomioka Hachmangu shrine is one of the largest such shrines. Since its foundation in 1627, it has been highly worshiped by locals.
The main hall is a vermillion building. In front of it, people make offering, bow twice, clap hands twice, pray silently, then bow once more at the end.
Every year around August 15th, the Fukugawa Hachiman Festival is held. It has been one of the three great festivals in Edo, today’s Tokyo, (along with Kanda festival and Sanno festival).
Visitors must see Japan’s best portable shrines decorated with gold, silver and diamonds which are displayed in the precinct. They are moved to go through the city by many people at the festival. One of highlights of the festival is sprinkling water to the people and portable shrines.
Tomioka Hachimangu is regarded as the original place where sumo wrestling was permitted by the Edo shogunate in 1648. There is a monument on which the names of the Yokozuna throughout history are engraved. The Yokozuna is the top position in sumo wrestling.
Short walking tour
Fukagawa Fudoson temple and Tomioka Hachimangu shrine are worth visiting to feel traditional Japanese atmosphere.
To visit the two religious spots, I would like to recommend this tour.