Japan Tokyo Sugamo

Koganji Temple

The revered site of Togenuki Jizo.

Photo of Koganji Temple, Japan (萬頂山 高岩寺 by KENPEI)

Koganji Temple, housing the Togenuki Jizo statue, is a prominent cultural and spiritual site in Tokyo. As a place of solace and Soto Zen Buddhist tradition, it draws visitors in search of spiritual and historical insight.

About Koganji Temple

Located in Tokyo’s Toshima Ward, Koganji Temple has been a pillar of spiritual harmony since its establishment in 1596. Originally situated in Kanda Yushima of Edo and later in Ueno Sakuragi, the temple has resided in its current Sugamo location since 1891. The temple’s resilience shone through its rebuilding after the Tokyo air raids in 1945, with the present main hall completed in 1957.

Central to Koganji Temple is the esteemed Togenuki Jizo statue, a representation of the Buddhist deity Jizo Bosatsu, revered for its legendary healing powers. The statue earned its name from an event involving a servant of the Mōri family and a swallowed needle, promoting the belief in its curative abilities. This legend contributes to the temple’s status as a beacon for those seeking miraculous healing, particularly the elderly.

The temple’s traditional architecture, with its main hall, pagoda, and memorial hall, reflects its cultural importance. Here, visitors can immerse themselves in religious practices, obtain protective omamori charms, and partake in rituals aimed at better health.

An additional cherished piece at Koganji Temple is the 1992 Arai Kannon statue by sculptor Hachirius Naoki. This Washing Kannon encourages visitors to wash corresponding areas of their bodies to alleviate their ailments.

Koganji Temple is not only a sanctuary for personal reflection but also a venue of community celebration. It holds Ennichi on days with the number 4, with grander festivities on January 24th, May 24th, and September 24th. The Setsubun-e on February 3rd is another vibrant event, marking the expulsion of misfortune.

The temple’s practices offer profound experiences for visitors, from drinking water imbued with the omikage of Jizo to participating in the grand festivals, connecting them to the temple’s historical and spiritual essence.

Adjacent to Koganji Temple is Sugamo Jizo Dori, colloquially known as the “Old Ladies’ Harajuku,” offering over 200 shops with wares that cater to the elderly. Among the popular items are the regional specialty Shio-Daifuku and auspicious red underwear. This lively street, along with the temple, forms a hub that honors Japan’s enduring cultural legacy.

Getting There the easiest way to reach Koganji Temple

JY 11

 JR Yamanote Line + 1 more

 5-10 minute walk (600m)
N 14

 Namboku Line + 1 more

 10-20 minute walk (1.3km)
M 24

 Marunouchi Line

 10-20 minute walk (1.5km)

Around Koganji Temple

Koganji Temple

Buddhist Temple in Tokyo

open 24 hours
closed Irregularly


高岩寺, 東京

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Updated 14 Mar 2024 • Report an error

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