Ankoku-ji Temple was founded in the mid-14th century by order of Ashikaga Takauji, the founder and first shogun of the Muromachi shogunate. Thought to be born in the area, Ashikaga Takauji's grave is located on the temple grounds, with his mother and wife by his side (these gravescan be found to the right-hand side of the temple, past the pond area). Ashikaga Takauji's mother, Uesugi Kiyoko, prayed to the bodhisattva of childbirth at Ankoku-ji Temple, wishing to bear a baby boy, and today is it still popular amongst those praying for safe childbirth. This historic Buddhist temple owns a substantial number of nationally designated Important Cultural Properties (such as the Seated Shaka Buddha Triad), which are displayed at the main hall. These properties include Ayabe City's important cultural heritages, which are valuable symbols of the city's history. The temple's main hall is a thatched roof building (very uncommon for a temple) surrounded by cascading maple trees. The bright green moss covering the thatched roof contrasts beautifully with the red, orange, and yellow autumn foliage within the grounds, making the temple seem like something out of a fairytale.
- 1 Teranodan, Ankokuji-cho, Ayabe City, Kyoto Prefecture
- Train: 15 minute walk from Umezako Station on the JR Maizuru Line.
Bus: Take Aya Bus (Kurotani Line) from Ayabe Station on the JR San-in Line, get off at "Ankokuji-mae" bus stop, and walk 2 minutes.
Car: Get off at the Ayabe Ankokuji Exit of the Kyoto Jukan Expressway. Head west after passing the JR Maizuru Line.
- Business Hours
- Open every day
Admission free.(An advance reservation is required to enter the inner sanctuary of the temple.) 8:00–18:00 (from Apr. to Sep.) 8:30–17:00 (from Oct. to Mar.)
- Space for regular-sized vehicles: 20 cars