|1 hours 30 mins|
|08:00 AM - 05:00 PM|
Temple & Monument
|8.55 - 0.09 USD|
Taiyuinbyo Shrine is good for
- Highly recommended by fellow travellers.
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Why Taiyuinbyo Shrine is special ?
Taiyuinbyo Shrine, like the Toshogu, features a mix of Buddhist and Shinto structures. It was common for places of worship to contain elements of both religions until the Meiji Period when Shinto was deliberately separated from Buddhism. Across the country, Buddhist elements were removed from shrines and vice versa, but at Taiyuinbyo the separation was not carried out completely. While Toshogu was officially made a shrine, the Taiyuinbyo became a subtemple of nearby Rinnoji Temple.
A short walk west of Toshogu Shrine takes visitors to the vermillion Niomon Gate, the entrance to the Taiyuinbyo. Proceeding on leads to the more lavishly decorated Nitenmon Gate which is guarded by two heavenly kings, followed by two beautiful structures - a drum tower on the left and a belfry on the right.
What to explore at Taiyuinbyo Shrine?
The first entrance to the grave is the Yaksha gate. Your eyes will be attracted to the vivid colors of the statues. In total four Yaksha (Indian guardian deities/demonic warriors incorporated into Buddhism) are placed at the front and the back on the right and the left to protect the grave. At the front of the Hall of Worship after passing through the Yaksha gate is the Chinese-style gate which is located at the center of Taiyuinbyo. Though small in size, the entire gate is covered with detailed carvings and the gate’s gold and white based colors are profoundly elegant. The walls on the side of the gate are covered entirely with carvings of pigeons. Some say that the pigeon is a symbol of the relationship between Ieyasu and Iemitsu. To get to the grave of Iemitsu located at the very back of Taiyuinbyo behind the main hall, one must pass through the Kokamon gate. This breathtaking structure is also called Ryugumon (dragon palace style gate) because elements of Chinese architectural styles were incorporated into its design. When you look up while passing through the gate, you will see heavenly maidens on the ceiling; they symbolize that you are about to enter a sanctuary.
How to get to Taiyuinbyo Shrine?
Taiyuinbyo stands about 200 meters west of Toshogu, a 30-40 minute walk or 10 minute bus ride (310 yen one way, 500 yen day pass, covered by the free passes) from Tobu and JR Nikko Stations.
- Peaceful mini version of Toshogu shrine
- Quiet Shrine, Fairly Impressive
- Great Way to Conclude Nikko Tour
- An encompassing walk
- Nice maple trees, strong sun
Yamauchi, Nikko, Tochigi Prefecture
Tips for you
Located some 500 meters from the bigger grandfather's Tosho-gu shrine, a pleasant 10 min walk through the woods takes you to the Iemitsu's shrine. Much less crowded than Tosho-gu's it is very enjoyable to admire the beauty and power demonstration of Tokugawa clan. It's slightly smaller than Tosho-gu, but same lavishly decorated in Japanese art from 17th cent. At the end of the shrine complex to the right Iemitsu's ashes are entombed. Allow around an hour for visit.