Take a pilgrimage around Shuri, called teramāi, and visit the temples of Shuri. At the 4 main temples, there are guardian dieties, representing the 12 animals of the zodiac. Take part in a tradition that has been around since the Ryukyu Kingdom. At the end or start of the year, as well as for important milestones, come give thanks to the gods and pray for good fortune or health. Many local people come around the New Year and on weekends to pray, so please be mindful not to interrupt their prayers. There is no particular order in which the temples must be visited, so feel free to match your trip with your schedule and interests.
START : 最寄りのバス停、駅をご確認ください
From the Naha Bus Terminal take bus [#346 Nishihara Eigyosho] for 7 stops, around 20 minutes, to Novotel Okinawa Naha-Mae.
4-minute walk （240ｍ）
Where even the Ryukyu Kings worshipped
First built in 1618, the Ryukyu King began to make annual visits from 1645 to pray for the safety of the country. The main diety, Senju-kannon-bosatsu, is said to save and grant wishes with her 1,000 arms. It is the most sacred place for Buddhists in Okinawa. It is also on one of the highest spots in Shuri, granting a commanding view of Naha, the port, and the ocean that lies beyond.
● Rat (Senju-kannon-bosatsu)
● Ox/Tiger (Kokuzo-bosatsu)
● Dragon/Snake (Fugen-bosatsu)
● Horse (Seishi-bosatsu)
8-minute walk （550ｍ）
Established in Okinawa by the Motoyama Rinzai Sect of Zen Buddhism
The Rinzai Sect of Zen Buddhism established the temple in 1457. The enshrined diety is Fudo Myo-o. After Enkaku-ji Temple was designated as a national treasure, Ankoku-ji Temple became the premier temple for the Rinzai Sect in Okinawa. The temple bell is housed at the Sanmon, an imposing gate made from Ryukyuan volcanic rock built as a bellfry gate, and is flanked by Nio guardians. Come and see the largest temple in Okinawa.
● Rooster (Fudo Myo-o)
5-minute walk （350ｍ）
Operating for over 160 years, come experience the most famous manju in Shuri!
At the foot of Shurijo Castle, near Ryutan pond sits our manju shop which has had its doors open for more than 160 years. Made without additives, our recipe hasn't been changed since our founding. Flour and water and kneaded before adding our house-made bean paste and then wrapping and baking it in shell ginger leaves. The thin layer of dough is the perfect partner to the bean paste, and the frangrant shell ginger will permeate your mouth. Take a load off from your busy schedule and take some time to rejuvenate with our recipe from a simpler time.
13-minute walk （1.0kｍ）
Sairaiin (Daruma-dera) Temple
Pass through the bright torii gate to your dreams
A Zen Buddhism Rinzai Sect temple, it is known to the locals as Daruma-dera temple. The guardian deity is Monjubosatsu, who is incredibly wise. Many students come here in the hope of getting higher grades. Also, it is said that wishes can be fulfilled by walking through the torii gates with a daruma doll and focusing your heart on your deepest desire, that health will be restored to the part of the daruma doll you are holding, or that wealth can be garnered to you. These factors all combine to make it an incredibly popular temple.
14-minute walk （1.2kｍ）
Prayer success rate that surpasses the sun
This is also a Zen Buddhist Rinzai Sect temple, and the guardian diety is Dainichinyorai. Though it is tucked away in a neighborhood, the entrance is flanked by Kongorikishi guardians. The name of the temple can also be interpreted to mean success, granting wishes, so this is certainly not a temple you want to pass up.
5-minute walk （400ｍ）
Enjoy a castella cake to commemorate the journey!
Stop by our traditional Okinawa-style red roof tile shop and grab a fluffy, round, bite-sized castella cake. There are flavors for any taste, include plain, winter melon powder, brown sugar, chocolate chip, and purple sweet potato (beni-imo). Perfectly situated between Seikoji Temple and the Gibo Monorail Station.
- Shuri Kannondo
- Ankoku-ji Temple
- Yamagusuku Manju
- Sairaiin (Daruma-dera) Temple
- Seikoji Temple