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Ankokuji Temple

A Masterpiece Temple in Autumn

Ankokuji Temple is renowned for the stunning foliage of the dodan-tsutsuji shrub (Enkianthus perulatus), which turns into vibrant hues on the hill behind the main temple building during the autumn season.


50 mins


Tanto-cho Bus Stop

Where is Ankokuji Temple?

Ankokuji, located in Tanto-cho Aida, Toyooka City, Hyogo Prefecture, is a Buddhist temple with a renowned history dating back to 1345. It is a Zen Buddhist temple, part of the Haitoku-ji branch of the Rinzai school—one of the three Zen sects in Japan. The temple suffered a major fire in 1717 but was subsequently rebuilt, and the current structure is what visitors see today. The temple is most famous for its over 100-year-old Dodan-Tsutsuji (Enkianthus perulatus) shrubbery planted behind the main hall when the Hondo worship hall was reconstructed in 1904.

What is special about Ankokuji Temple?

Ankokuji Temple is renowned for the stunning autumn foliage of the dodan-tsutsuji shrubs (Enkianthus perulatus), which blaze with vibrant colors on the hill behind the temple's main building. This picturesque scene is created by more than 10 bushes clustered around the main one, which is approximately 160 years old.

The temple grounds, adorned with these bushes, attract around 30,000 visitors during the autumn season, offering a captivating view, especially when illuminated in the evenings.

When to visit Ankokuji Temple?

The best time to view the Dodan-Tsutsuji is in the autumn, typically around November. However, the peak time to admire the autumn leaves of the Dodan-Tsutsuji may vary each year depending on weather conditions, but it's advisable to visit before the sun begins to set. Additionally, the Dodan-Tsutsuji can also be appreciated at any time throughout the year, particularly showcasing vibrant greenery in the spring and summer.

Ankokuji also has hundreds of Natsu Tsubaki trees lining the path to the old ruins of the temple. From June to July every year, these trees bloom with white flowers, creating an incredibly picturesque walking path.

For further information, please access the official website:

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