A temple with three-story pagoda in a nature-rich place, is a part of the UNESCO World Herritage Site.
Hoki-ji Temple（法起寺）is located in the Ikaruga area of Nara surrounded by rice paddies and cosmos fields. Hoki-ji is one of the seven temples erected by Prince Shotoku, and a part of the UNESCO World Heritage Site, Buddhist Monuments in the Horyu-ji Area.
The temple’s ancient three-story pagoda dating back to 706 AD is the oldest of its kind of pagoda. The pagoda is constructed from wood using traditional techniques. This wooden constructions blend into the nature around is one of the reasons to attract visitors.
In Autumn, visitors can have a beautiful sight of golden rice paddies and cosmos flowers in bloom around the temple. This beautiful landscape makes a perfect backdrop for historical monuments and is perfect for photography. It’s probably one of the best spots for an autumn retreat away from the hustle and bustle.
In the Ikaruga area, where the famous Horyu-ji Temple is located, there are many other old temples that have connection with Prince Shotoku. This area was a center of the Buddhist culture since ancient times. Hoki-ji Temple is in Okamoto area, at the foot of a mountain on the northeast side of Horyu-ji Temple. This place is considered as the old site of Okamoto Palace, where Prince Shotoku Taishi preached the Hokke-kyo Sutra (the Lotus Sutra). It is said that the origin of Hoki-ji Temple goes back to the time when Prince Yamashiro no oe, Prince Shotoku’s son, converted Okamoto Palace into a temple according to his father’s will.
Hoki-ji Temple was constructed as a similar layout to Horyu-ji Temple with the main hall and the pagoda arranged side-by-side (east-west). However, in contrast to Horyu-ji Temple, its Kondo was placed in the west and the pagoda was in the east. This architectural style named Hoki-ji style.
Among the original structures, three-story pagoda is only remaining.
Access : Buses leave regularly from Nara Station or Oji Station, and get off at the Hokiji-mae bus stop or the Hokiji-guchi bus stop. You can also reach there in 40-minute walk from JR Horyuji Station with a beautiful landscape.
Admission : 300 yen