Shiofune Kannon-ji Azalea Garden - Shiofune Kannon-ji is most famous for its azaleas that bloom in late April and early May, with 17,000 trees from fifteen different types. The plants form a unique azalea garden that is unusual in its design and conception. On top of the undulating hills and mounds of azaleas is a large statue of Kannon the Buddhist goddess of mercy for whom the temple is named.
Shiofune Kannonji temple is where founder Yao Bikuni is said to have lived 800 years through eating mermaid flesh. The temple was built in 650, though the main hall was erected in the Muromachi period. The temple has been designated as an important cultural property by the government of Japan.
- ©John Lander
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