Sengakuji Station is a railway station located in the Takanawa neighborhood of Minato Ward of Tokyo, serving the Toei Asakusa Subway Line and the Keihin Electric Express Railway.

Sengakuji Station gets its name from Sengakuji Temple which is located just a few steps from the station.

Sengakuji Temple

Sengakuji Temple is a Soto Zen Buddhist temple which houses one of the most well known landmarks of the Edo period - the graves of the 47 Ronin and their lord, Asano Takumi-no-Kami Naganori. The story of the Ronin and Asano is one of the best loved historical stories in Japan which many outside the country know as well. It has been made and performed in the form of a kabuki play, movie, and television dramas.

According to the story, in 1701, lord Asano was insulted by lord Kira at the Edo castle. Tensions grew between the two and as a result Asano committed seppuku (ritual suicide). Asano’s 47 samurai retainers, whose lives were ruined, decided to take revenge and went to Kira’s house. They attacked Kira and insisted that he too commit seppuku. When he refused, they chopped off his head and took it to Sengakuji Temple to their lord Asano’s grave. They placed the head on Asano’s grave and prayed, after which they all committed seppuku themselves so they could join their master in death. The priest of the temple buried them all next to their master. The site has now become a place of pilgrimage where people come from all over the country to pay respects to the loyal retainers.

The temple itself is not very impressive, neither is it very big, but because of the graves it is one of the most famous and most popular temples of Tokyo. To get to the temple, one has to pass through three different gates. Past the second gate is a bronze statue of Oisji Kuranosuke, the leader of the 47 ronin who lead the attack on Kira. The main hall of the temple comes after the third gate, on the ceiling of which is a bronze dragon. On the left of the hall is another statue, of Sawaki Kodo Roshi, a Zen master of the 20th century. Past the statue is the temple bell which was constructed in 1913. Nearby among a cluster of trees is the blood stoned stone where Asano had committed seppuku. Next is a gate past which are the graves of the 47 Ronin and lord Asano. There is also a small museum on the temple grounds commemorating the 47 ronin. It exhibits mementoes of the ronins as well as various articles associated with the incident.


Gishi-sai is the festival held every year on December 14 in honor of the 47 loyal retainers. December 14 is the anniversary of the 47 ronins’ avenge. Gishi-sai is celebrated with costume parades and prayers at the temple. Forty-seven men dressed as the ronin travel in a procession from Nihombashi Memmo Company (near Higashi-Nihombashi Station), cross Ryoguku Bridge, proceed to Matsuzskacho Park and end at Sengakuji Temple. The entire route becomes packed with crowds of pilgrims and visitors who gather to watch the parade and take part in a special Buddhist service held at the temple. They later burn incense sticks (senko) in the graveyard to pay their respects, and enjoy typical foods like Okonomiyaki and Takoyaki at the temporary constructed food stalls on the temple grounds and all along the route.


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Featured Hotels in the Sengakuji area that we represent
Hotel JAL City Haneda Tokyo (A-07)

Hotel JAL City Haneda Tokyo offers luxury accommodations and sophisticated services to both business and leisure travelers. The hotel is a favorite with guests because of the numerous facilities it offers and its close proximity to the Tokyo International Airport. JAL City Haneda is a 5 minute walk from Sengakuji Station.

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