Todaiji Temple Travel Guide

Todaiji Temple
A big Buddha awaits your arrival in an even bigger grand hall, at a temple which once ruled over all the rest in Japan.

Nearby Food Experiences

Nearby Restaurants



Get a taste of Nara through Spanish dishes, while overlooking the blooming trees of Nara Park.
Lunch: ¥10,000-15,000
Dinner: ¥20,000-30,000

Sukiyaki Kappo Kitsune

Just a short walk from Kintetsu-Nara Station, this back-alley sukiyaki restaurant is reinventing Meiji-era cuiine with French-influenced starters and Nara-grown local ingredients.
Lunch: ¥7,000-18,000
Dinner: ¥18,000-18,000


Located in central Nara, just a short walk from the city’s most famous attractions, this kappo counter restaurant offers unbeatable value for fine Japanese course meals. A comfortably modern setting and attractive price point make it a must-visit.
Lunch: ¥5,000-10,000
Dinner: ¥10,000-15,000


Try your hand at becoming a top grill-master at this authentic charcoal yakiniku store.
Lunch: ¥5,000-5,999
Dinner: ¥10,000-14,999

Plenty of people know that Kyoto used to be the capital of Japan, but were you aware that the city of Nara once held that honor? Todaiji Temple was built in 752 AD, during that golden age of the city. It served as the one temple to rule them all — head of every other in Japan, and extremely powerful as a result.

Nowadays, the temple is situated within the grounds of Nara Park, and is its most popular sightseeing spot. The main building is the Big Buddha Hall, which is the biggest wooden building in the entire world. Amazingly, it was once even bigger, with the original incarnation being around 1.5 times the size of the current one. Inside, you’ll find a 15 meter Buddha, flanked by some heavenly retainers.

Towards the back of the hall, you’ll find a pillar with an opening in the bottom. It’s said that if you can fit through it, you’ll achieve enlightenment in the next life (but don’t get stuck in front of everyone for the sake of future you). On the grounds you’ll also find a museum which details the history of the temple and showcases some of its extensive collection of artifacts.

Stay in the Loop!
Be the first to know about the latest foodie trends.
Sign up for insider tips & sneak peeks into the diverse world of dining in Japan