Things to Do

Spiritual Retreat in Akita: Yudonosan Ryusenji Temple Awaits You

The site logo

Discover Yudonosan Ryusenji Temple at the foot of UNESCO World Heritage Site Shirakami Sanchi

Spiritual Retreat in Akita: Yudonosan Ryusenji Temple Awaits You

Nestled in the serene landscapes of Noshiro City, Akita Prefecture, Yudonosan Ryusenji Temple offers visitors a peaceful retreat and a deep connection to Japanese culture and nature. This historic place is a hidden gem, perfect for international tourists seeking unique and meaningful experiences.

About Yudonosan Ryusenji Temple


While Yudonosan Ryusenji Temple shares its name with the renowned Yudonosan in Yamagata Prefecture, it has its own distinct history. The original Yudonosan is part of the sacred Dewa Sanzan mountains, known for their deep spiritual significance and long-standing pilgrimage traditions. In contrast, Yudonosan Ryusenji in Noshiro City has developed its unique spiritual heritage and community over the years, serving as a local center for worship and reflection.

Temple Community

Unlike many temples, Yudonosan Ryusenji does not have a parish community (danka). Instead, it is supported by daily visitors who come for various prayers and rituals, such as yakuyoke (disaster prevention) and goma (fire) ceremonies.

Cultural Heritage

Over its 1000-year history, the temple has preserved and inherited various temple treasures. Historically, it was common for people to visit temples and speak with the head priest. However, in modern times, temples have become less of a daily presence for many people. The current head priest, Ms. Kimura, is dedicated to making the temple a more accessible and welcoming place for the community through various experiences and activities.

Natural Setting

Although the temple’s garden is modest in size, it is adjacent to Noshiro Park, where visitors can enjoy the vibrant colors of seasonal flowers and trees. The park also offers stunning views of the Shirakami Mountains, enhancing the temple’s serene ambiance.

Experiences at the Temple

Yudonosan Ryusenji Temple offers various activities that allow visitors to immerse themselves in Japanese culture and Buddhist traditions.

1. Sutra Copying Experience (Shakyo)

  • Description: Engage in the meditative practice of sutra copying, where participants transcribe Buddhist scriptures with a brush. This activity helps to calm the mind and purify the soul.
  • Duration: Approximately 1.5 hours
  • Suitable For: All ages and experience levels

2. Rosary-Making Experience (Juzu Making)

  • Description: Create your own Buddhist rosary beads (juzu) in this hands-on workshop. Guided by temple staff, this activity is both educational and spiritually enriching.
  • Duration: Approximately 1 hour
  • Suitable For: All ages and experience levels

3. Garden and Park Stroll

  • Description: Take a leisurely walk through the temple’s garden and adjacent Noshiro Park. Enjoy the peaceful ambiance and the stunning views of seasonal flowers and the Shirakami Mountains.
  • Duration: Flexible

Additional Offerings

  • Organic Tea: Purchase the temple’s original organic tea, a perfect souvenir to remember your visit.
  • Goshuin: Collect a unique goshuin (temple stamp) as a memento of your visit. These beautiful calligraphic stamps are a treasured keepsake for many visitors.
  • English Support: The temple provides English support to ensure that international visitors have a meaningful and enjoyable experience. *Reservations are required in advance.

Visit Yudonosan Ryusenji Temple to experience the harmony of nature and spirituality, and immerse yourself in the rich cultural heritage of Japan. This tranquil temple, with its picturesque surroundings, engaging cultural activities, and supportive English-speaking staff, offers the perfect setting for reflection and rejuvenation.



Admission: Free
Worship guide: 1,000 yen *Reservations are required in advance.

*Varies depending on the activity
Business Hours
9:00 to 16:00
Postal Code
7-23 Seisukemachi, Noshiro, Akita, Japan
Phone Number
Email Address

Other suggested things to do