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Shikoku | Ehime | Matsuyama

Ishiteji Temple

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Ishiteji Temple

The Ishiteji Temple is number 51 out of the 88 temples dotted along the Shikoku Pilgrimage located on Shikoku Island. The Shikoku Pilgrimage extends to Ehime Prefecture with the spiritual trail spanning over 1,200 kilometers consisting of 88 temples with the association with Kobo Daishi, the founder of Shingon Buddhism in Japan. Visitors can see pilgrims dressed in white, traveling along the sacred path during spring time, a common occurrence embraced by the Ehime locals, but a unique sight anywhere else. The religious tradition attracts worshipers world-wide to visit the Ishiteji Temple with 7 of its structures designated as Important Cultural Properties and National Treasures of Japan. The temple structures features many of the Kamakura period architectural traits, with multiple structures among halls and a three story pagoda. The treasure house located on the temple grounds houses and displays some of the most important artifacts of the temple to travelers and worshipers. Be sure to try out some of the specialty snack called “Oyaki” in the area, which are rice cakes with usually a red bean paste filling, said to bring good luck to people who eat them. It was believed that the traditional of rice cake making went back to when the local rice farmer offered produce to the temple. Today, it has become a snack that goes along with a visit to Ishiteji Temple, also known as a popular “power spot” of Ehime Prefecture.