Mibu-dera Temple is famous for having been used as the training ground for Shinsengumi
You can find Mibu-dera Temple (Mibudera) a 10-minute walk from Hankyu or Randen Omiya stations. The temple is famous for its connections with the Shinsengumi, a special police force that was active in the late Bakumatsu period of Japanese history.
To tell you why this temple is related to the Shinsengumi, the reason is that the temple grounds were used as a training ground by the special police force. Even this day you can find a sculpture of the Shinsengumi commander Kondo Isami and the graves of eleven Shinsengumi members at the Mibu-zuka graveyard located at the temple. Because of this, the temple is a popular spot among those interested in the history of Japan.
Mibu-dera is famous for its connections with the Shinsengumi, but it’s also a temple with a long history dating back to the year 991 in the Heian period of Japan. There are many important cultural artifacts at the temple, and you can also get to see traditional theater performances called Kyogen thrice a year, in February (Setsubun), April and October.
At the Amida-do Hall, you can get to see Amida Buddha statues, Kannon,and Seishi one. You can get to the Mibu-zuka graveyard through this building. On the basement floor they have an exhibition where you get to learn more about the history of the temple, see important cultural artifacts, and learn about its relations with the Shinsengumi.
This Buddha statue tower was built in 1988 to celebrate the 1000th anniversary of Mibu-dera Temple. 1000 stone Buddha statues were gathered from all around Kyoto to make this pagoda which was made in the Myanmar-style.
After you go through the Amida-do Hall, you’ll get to the Mibu-zuka graveyard where you can find the graves of the Shinsengumi members including the grave of the commander Kondo Isami. Entrance is 200 yen for adults and 100 yen for elementary, middle, and high school students, and you also get to see the exhibitions in the basement.
Mibu Kyogen has been loved by the people of Kyoto for ages. The proper name for these farcical plays is Mibu Dainenbutu Kyogen, and the plays are held in February for Setsubun, and in April and October.
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