Nandaimon gate of Todaoji temple

The tourist spot that I will introduce today is Nandaimon gate of Todaiji temple in Nara. Nandaimon gate is the biggest gate of temple in Japan.

It is the scenery around 7:40 in the morning.
The field spreading on the right side of the approach road is part of Nara Park.
The near side is called Ukigumo-enchi, and the other side is called Kasugano-enchi.
The building that can be seen far is called Nara Kasugano International Forum.
There is a full-scale Noh theater in the building, and Noh is sometimes performed.
The mountain that you see far is Wakakusa-yama.
"Mountain burning is done every year in late January."
You can climb this mountain easily.
Kindergarten children sometimes climb as an excursion.

The approach road to Todaiji temple

Most souvenir shops beside the approach road are not yet open.
After a while walking, there is Nandaimon.
It is the biggest gate of temple in Japan.

Nandaimon of Todaiji temple

It is the 2nd generation.
The first gate seems to had been built in the middle of the 6th century, but it collapsed in 962 by the strong wind.
And it was rebuilt in 1203.
This gate looks like a two-storey building.
However, when you look up from the bottom you can see that it is a colonnade.

Upper part of Nandaimon

Upper part of Nandaimon

The pillars of 18 columns are about 21 meters length.
On both sides of Nandaimon's gateway are The statue of Kongo Rikishi.
One of the statues is called Agyo, and the mouth is opened.


The other statue is called Ungyo, and the mouth is closed.


The literal translations of "Agyo" and "ungyo" are "The shape of A" and "The shape of Un".
A means the first letter of Sanskrit, and Un means the last letter of Sanskrit.
(India is the birthplace of Buddhism, Sanskrit language was used as letters to write sentences in ancient India.)
So A and Un means the beginning and the end of things.
Though these statues are made of wood, they are not made from a single big wood, but carving a bundled small woods.

[ Approximate Latitude and Longitude of tourist spots etc. ]
On Google Maps, you can examine the location by latitude and longitude.
The following latitudes and longitudes are not officially announced, they are what I examined.
So they may be wrong.
(1)Nandaimon of Todai-ji temple: N34.6857 E135.8399

(March 11, 2018)