Hotokuji (Floor Maples Special Exhibition)
Must-see! An impressive view of the "floor maples"
Temple (autumn leaves)
Located in the outskirts of Kiryu in a place surrounded on three sides by mountains, "Hotokuji" is a Zen temple built around 1450 during Japan's Muromachi period. It is known for the "floor maples (autumn leaves reflection)" in which maples are reflected on the floor. During the special spring, summer, and autumn exhibition periods, you can enter the main temple that is usually closed off to appreciate the natural beauty of the "floor maples" reflected onto a space equivalent to 28 tatami mats.
In the autumn, over 100 maples trees on the temple grounds change colors, and the exhibition is held during the peak viewing season from mid October to late November. Red and yellow maples are reflected on the floor in a remarkably beautiful way. There is also a restricted illumination exhibition (reservation/fee required), where you can enjoy a magical scene that differs from the daytime. In addition, vibrant new green leaves take the spotlight during the "Spring Floor Maples Special Exhibition." The brightness of the new green leaves reflected on the polished lacquered floor is breathtakingly beautiful. For a brief moment, you will be lured into another world, accompanied by a stillness that feels like time has stopped. The peony flowers on the grounds are also in bloom during this season, so you can walk through the garden and enjoy the colorful floral paradise.
During the traditional "Wind Chime Festival" in the summer, there is also a brief "Summer Floor Maples Special Exhibition." After passing through a tunnel of wind chimes lining the path to the temple and entering the main hall, you will see summery "floor maples" in which wind chimes are reflected in dark green.
Only a few people around the country are able to see these "floor maples." Photography and posting on social media is freely allowed, so tens of thousands of visitors come during the exhibition period. It is not unusual for long lines to form, but it is worth seeing this precious scenery even if you have to wait in line. It is important to note that it is not possible to see the "floor maples" outside of the special spring, summer, and autumn exhibition periods. Be sure to check out the very rare Floor Maples Special Exhibition at Hotokuji.
- 5-1608 Kawauchicho, Kiryu City, Gunma
- Telephone number
- 9:00 AM to 4:00 PM
- Admission fee
- <Mid autumn> 500 yen <Late autumn> 1000 yen
- 15 minutes by car from Aioi Station on the Tobu Kirui Line/Watarase Keikoku Railway, or from Akagi Station on the Tobu Kiryu Line. 25 minutes by bus from Kiryu Station on the JR Ryomo Line.
- Official website
- Official website (Japanese)