Just 5 minutes’ walk from the JR Isshinda Station in Tsu City, and directly east of the Kintetsu Takadahonzan Station is the largest Buddhist temple in Mie Prefecture, the Senjuji. Surrounded by high earthen walls, with an impressive set of gates and the distinctive Taikomon bell tower’s gabled roofs, the temple looks more like a small castle than a place of worship.
Listed as an Important Cultural asset, it boasts a 725 tatami mat floor space. The main worship hall is the largest wooden structure in the prefecture. The temple was founded by the great monk Shinran Shonin in 1226, and was the chief temple of the Takada branch of the Jodo Shinshu sect of Buddhism. In the temple grounds you can see Mieido and Nyoraido, known as outstanding wooden buildings in Japan, which are both over twenty-five meters tall and were designated as the first national treasure buildings in Mie on November 28, 2017.
Treasures of the Senjuji include a wooden statue of the temples’ founder, Shinran seated with prayer beads in hands. The scroll, “A record of Shinrans’ Dream” is also preserved at the temple, along with other national treasures and important cultural assets. There are also many national important cultural properties in the precincts of the temple such as Saiho-shinansyo and Sanjo-wasan, which were written in Saint Shinran’s own hand.