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Nara Feature 3: Saidaiji

Note: This Feature was made on October 10, 2001, as I visited the Yamato Area of old Japan. (MAP)


Saidaiji is one of the many temples located on Nara's quieter west side. It is between Todaiji and Kikoji. A walk down this road evokes the past in a way that few places can. You can read about my visit to Nara in my Logbook.

Saidaiji was founded in 765 A.D. It is the "Great Western Temple" which corresponds to Todaiji, the "Great Eastern Temple" on the other side of town (and home of the Great Buddha). There's nothing that grandiose here, but I have a soft spot for old foundation stones, so this one was well worth the visit.

This platform stands directly in front of the main hall, with foundation stones on it. I guess it may have been a pagoda.

Another view. Unfortunately, I couldn't get enough elevation to shoot the stones clearly.

Also on the grounds: this modest front gate...

...and a pretty little bell tower, beside which I had a late lunch.

Posted October 6, 2019

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