Today we are going to be talking about two Buddhist temples located in Ueno Park, Shinobazunoike Benten-do and Kiyomizu Kannon-do. Ueno Park is located in the Ueno of Taito City, Tokyo.
Shinobazunoike Benten-do Temple is dedicated to Benzaiten, the Japanese goddess of all that flows, including water, music, love, wealth, etc. The temple features a beautiful octagonal pagoda visible at the end of the sando (approach). The temple is located on Shinobazu Pond so there are numerous activities including renting swan boats to participate in during your trip to the temple. Benten-do actually sits on an island due to its location within the pond!
The main building is decorated with various lanterns and flags.
Across the way, you will encounter Kiyomizu Kannon-do. There is a temizuya located outside of its main building, prior to climbing the stairs to its main deck, for those that choose to purify themselves.
On the deck of Kiyomizu Kannon-do, there is a machine where you can exchange 200 yen for an omikuji (fortunate slip). The machine has a robotic puppet of a shishimai (lion dance) that picks your omikuji for you. After getting your omikuji, you can take it home with you or tie it on the metal wire wall, as I am seen doing in the picture below.
Kiyomizu Kannon-do also features unique foliage such as the tree below which plays into the beauty of the temple (and makes for an awesome photo opportunity!). Looking down from Kiyomizu Kannon-do’s main hall, you can see that Bentendo-do is located in Shinobazu Pond, and the surrounding greenery matches very well with the green roof of its main octagonal pagoda.