Bansho-ji Temple

Bansho-ji Temple © S.Kasugai

About Bansho-ji 

Bansho-ji is a Soto Zen Buddhist temple located in Nagoya City’s Osu Shopping Street. It was established in 1540 by Oda Nobunaga’s father Nobuhide and following that it became the Nobunaga family temple (where mortuary tablets of ancestors are held.) The concrete main hall was destroyed during the Pacific war and then rebuilt later, and has 1 basement floor and 5 above ground floors. The grounds have been opened with a mind towards coexistence with the local shopping street. The shrine has connections to both Oda Nobunaga and Tokugawa Ieyasu and thus draws many people interested in their history.

Karakuri dolls

A famous item located here at Bansho-ji temple is the karakuri doll of Oda Nobunaga that was put here when the main hall was reconstructed. When a performance is held, the doll and its accompanying stage come out of the wall of the third floor, and everyone in the area can look up and admire the performance. There are two kinds of performances: one in which Oda Nobunaga is throwing funeral incense at his father’s mortuary tablet, and another where Nobunaga does a dance. These are held 5 times a day every two hours starting at 10:00.
The craftsman for this karakuri doll was the local doll creator Tamamiya Shobe. In 2008 it became broken and would no longer move, but on the occasion of the Great East Japan Earthquake it was fixed in order to help lift the spirits of the nation.

Full of divine favor

Also on the premises is a stone statue of the Fudo-Myo-o which is said to have saved Oda Nobunaga when he was attacked by assassins, as well as the Hakusetsu Inari which is said to have helped raised money to revive Bansho-ji when it fell into decline. Many people come here to see these lucky objects in order to receive divine favor, protection from disaster, safety, business prosperity, and other blessings. On the 28th of every month there is a temple festival where mochi is pounded and people come to enjoy sticky rice cakes.


On the Subway Meijo Line or Tsurumai Line go to Kamimaezu Station (上前津駅) and it’s a 3 minute walk from there. From the No. 8 exit even on rainy days you can take an umbrella and walk there along the shopping arcade. You can enjoy the atmosphere of a prosperous business district as you walk your way up to the shrine. If you are coming by car there is a large paid parking lot nearby.

Image Gallery: Bansho-ji Temple

Description: Bansho-ji Temple

Sights Bansho-ji Temple (萬松寺)
Address 3-29-12 Osu, Naka Ward, Nagoya, Aichi Prefecture 460-0011
Phone / Fax Phone: 052-262-0735
Duration 50Minutes
Closed dates 7 days open
Admission Fee Free admission
Recommended Season
Spring (March - May)
Summer (June - August) Autumn (September - November) Winter (December - February)
Recommended target Family Couples Groups Child (ages 7-17) Adult (ages 20+) Single traveller

Map: Bansho-ji Temple