Japan -03/31- 04/08/2017

Nara -4/6/2017

Nara park Nandaimon gate & Todai ji Stone lanterns/Kasuga Shrines

To get to Nara we took the express JR Line from Kyoto station to Nara station.   It takes about 45 minuntes with the express Jr train, and about 70 minutes with a regular train.   The city of Nara is famous for its many shrines and temples, many of which date back to the 8th century when Nara was Japan’s first permanent capital. Eight locations are UNESCO World Heritage Sites.

Once you get out of the train station, cross the street and walk to Sanjo Dori Street which is just a little to the north of the station. Sanjo Dori is a broad shopping street and very easy to recognize. Once you are on this street, simply walk straight until you reach the park or just follow people.



Nara Park is a large, scenic, public park in the center of Nara City. The park is famous for its friendly wild deer, and most of Nara’s major attractions are located either inside or on the edges of the park.  Established in 1880, it is the location of many of Nara's main attractions including Todaiji, Kasuga Taisha, Kofukuji and the Nara National Museum.

Nanendo (Southern Octagonal Hall)
 Situated at the edge of Nara Park, this is the first temple you will see as you walk in Nara Park. Built in 813 is one of the few temple with an octagonal hall.

It is not open to the public but can look at the outside.


Lanterns in front of the temple.

Toji Temple literally "East Temple", is a buddish temple dated from 796. It was one of only three Buddhist temples allowed in the capital at the time, and is the only of the three to survive to the present. Toji Temple is one of Kyoto's many UNESCO world heritage sites.

The Five-story pagoda of Tō-ji stands 54.8 m high, and is the tallest wooden tower in Japan. The pagoda has been, and continues to be, a symbol of Kyoto. Entrance into the pagoda itself is permitted only a few days a year.


Kondo Hall


Next to Toji temple is the The Kondo Hall, which was added in 825 by Kobo Daishi and served as the temple's lecture hall. It too burned down in the 1486 fire, and was subsequently rebuilt in its original architectural style. The Kodo Hall houses 19 statues imported by Kobo Daishi from China, which are arranged according to a mandala with Dainichi Buddha (Vairocana) at the center, surrounded by buddhas, bodhisattvas and the fearful and guardian kings.

Sign advertising Special Exhibition in Nara and Tokyo


As we are entering the park, we can start to see the deer. 

Deer crackers are for sale around the park, and some deer have learned to bow to visitors to ask to be fed.

The park is home to hundreds of freely roaming deer. Considered in Shinto to be messengers of the gods, Nara's nearly 1200 deer have become a symbol of the city and have even been designated as a natural treasure. Nara's deer are surprisingly tame, although they can be aggressive if they think you will feed them.

According to Shinto tradition and lore, deer are the sacred messengers of the gods, such that, in ancient times, killing a deer in Nara was a crime punishable by death. Nowadays, deer are no longer considered sacred, but in honor of tradition, they’re considered as protected national treasures, which is why you can see them roaming in Nara Park. They wander through the temples, sleep in corners, and generally stand around as tourists take their pictures.


You know I love animals so being able to feed these deer are really a delight!


I was so smitten that I almost lost track of time so Hoa to remind me we got to move on...…

Most of them are very tame but a few of them can be really aggressive too. They come close to you, grab your butt with their mouth, it does not hurt but you definitely pay attention to them....


I am in heaven, love feeding these deer.  If it is up to me, I can probably spend hours feeding them...

They are cute and most of them are very gentle.

I enjoyed feeding them that's for sure!  I don't know who can resist them... Look how they are looking at me.

A deer following me in the middle on a large street.


You can touch them and they are not scare.

One of the street with lots of stores selling souvenirs and food.

Deer resting in a comfortable position!

A man feeding a few deer.

Next... Todai Ji temple



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