A region on the northern coast of Miyagi Prefecture, Kesennuma offers a number of rare experiences. Full of unique natural sites and abundant with delicious seafood, Kesennuma also features many temples and shrines, like the 460-year-old Zen temple, Seiryoin. A cultural center for many generations, this local Kesennuma temple is not only historic, but it’s also welcoming and peaceful.
An immersive cultural experience, find out what it’s like living as a Zen monk during this Kesennuma Temple Experience. You’ll have the chance to try meditation, have a tour of the temple grounds, and cook a simple and wholesome lunch. The meal will be made from ingredients given to the monks by the local people they serve in the community, such as fishermen. The monks place an emphasis on using all the ingredients they receive, so as to avoid unnecessary waste. At Seiryoin, they follow a school of Zen Buddhism that is more relaxed, called “Soto,” therefore the monks occasionally eat fish or meat, while other schools of Zen Buddhism avoid all animal products and eat only “Shojin Ryori” (the vegetarian Buddhist cuisine).
The main hall of the temple offers scenic ocean views, where you’ll relax during a Zen meditation session. Your practice will be led by a master monk, whose guidance and openness will put you at ease. Next, you’ll take a guided tour and explore the temple grounds. You’ll hear stories about how Kesennuma was largely destroyed during the Great East Japan Earthquake of 2011, and how Seiryoin served as an evacuation center for 100 people in the 2 months following the disaster. Having rallied from this tragedy, the monks will talk about lessons learned and how they currently live in peace.
Show your support for local industries in Kesennuma and help the community continue to grow in the wake of the the 2011 tsunami by booking this Kesennuma Temple Experience.
Zen meditation session with a master monk
Tour the grounds of a 460-year-old-temple
Ingredients, tools, and equipment for hands-on cooking class with monks
Meeting Point and Meeting Time
The meeting point is at Kesennuma Station
Pleas be reminded to be on time