The Sensoji Temple in Tokyo’s Asakusa neighborhood is more than 1,000 years old but you wouldn’t say so when you stand in front of the colorful shrine. It looks like old religious structures age much better in Japan than in other parts of the world!
The outer gate called the Kaminarimon or Thunder Gate, of Sensoji Temple is also the symbol of Tokyo. One of the best places to visit in Tokyo. You can’t miss its characteristic red chochin lantern flanked by the two statues of Fujin-sama and Raijin-sama. They are the god of wind and the god of thunder and lightning.
One wouldn’t normally expect a shopping street within a temple complex. However, this is exactly what the 200 meters from the outer gate to the next gate, the Hozomon, is. The Nakamise-Dori, as the street is called, isn’t a modern addition either. The Japanese have shopped here for centuries, buying anything from food to folding fans. Today, many of the shops are souvenir shops.
Before you get too distracted by the shops, continue to Hozomon and finish your exploration of the temple structures. This way, you can do your shopping later without fearing that you’re going to miss out on one of the best places to visit in Tokyo.
Sensoji Temple’s main hall and a 5-storey Pagoda lies beyond Hozomon Gate. Take your time to walk up the stairs of the Hondo, the main temple. There’s some pretty impressive art on the ceilings.
Tip: Find out what the future holds for you at Sensoji Temple. Look out for the fortune tellers who’ll give you a container with sticks to shake. You will then pick a stick and receive your fortune based on the number that’s on it.