Sakunage Matsuri, with over 1000 Japanese rhododendrons and western rhododendrons blooming in the period from April 1 to April 15, 2019, at Kouya-ji Temple (Takeo City, Saga Prefecture, Japan), one of the eighty-eight sacred places in Kyushu, is held.
Kouyaji temple is an old historic temple, which is said to be opened by Koubou Daishi, the Buddhism great teacher 1200 years ago. It is famous for its rhododendron and is also known as ‘Shakunage-dera’ (The Temple of Rhododendron). Its beautiful Japanese garden has been restored based on ancient documents.
Rhododendron flowers are in full bloom in the beginning of April usually. The garden is colored by rhododendron white and pink, crimson of the temple tower, and green moss.
There is a corridor about 50 meters in length, and visitors can enjoy the beautiful rhododendron without getting wet on rainy days
It is also popular for its beautiful moss, and the ‘Aoba Festival’ will be held in the period from April 16 to May 6, 2019, following the ‘Shakunage Festival’.
Beautiful in autumn color too!
‘Shakunage’ means rhododendron in Japanese. This Japanese word, ‘Shaku-Nage’ (‘nage’ means to throw), has another means ‘stress-relief’. So that Kouyaji Temple is known also as ‘Shaku-Nage dera’ (The Temple of stress-relief). The visitors embraces Kannon statue in the precincts and throws away the seeds of distress and suffering.
Kouyaji Tenmle Rhododendron Festival (Kouyaji Shakunage Matsuri)
April 1 to April 15, 2019
Entrance Fee: Adult 500 yen *free for junior high school students and younger
Place: Kouyaji Temple
Address: 3245 Shiku, Kitagata-cho, Takeo-Shi, Saga, Japan
* “Aoba Festival” April 16 – May 6, 2019