OSAKA

Tsutenkaku tower

 

A tall tower skyscraping in the heart of the old downtown developed as an entertainment district called “Shin-Sekai” (lit. new world) more than 8 decades ago. By modeling after the Eiffel Tower in Paris, the 64-meter tall Tsutenkaku Tower was built as the tallest tower in Asia in 1912 and it began to be recognized as a symbol of Osaka before long. Following fire accident in 1943, the tower had to be taken apart once during wartime and it was missed by locals for over a decade. In 1956, reconstruction took a place and the Tsutenkaku Tower was brought back to the view of Osaka as a symbol of Osaka once again. The tower boasts a height of 103 meters with contemporary features added to the design and is dressed up with some neon lights that make the tower glows in the night sky. From the 91-meter high observation gallery, you can have the complete view of Osaka city.

Shitennoji Temple

Founded by Prince Shotoku in 593, Shitennoji is known to be the oldest Buddhist temple in Japan. When the new religion, Buddhism was first introduced to Japan, it was soon adopted by Prince Shotoku and Soga Clan led by Prince Shotoku attempted to spread the Buddhism in the country. Monobe Clan, on the other hand, opposed the idea of adopting Buddhism instead of their traditional religion, Shintoism, and such difference in beliefs of these two clans led them to conflict. It is said that the Four Heavenly Kings were curved by Prince Shotoku to pray for his victory over the Monobe Clan and the Shitennoji Temple was erected to enshrine the statues to fulfill a vow after winning victory. 1400 years passed, Shitennoji still preserves the original layout from the Asuka period despite several constructions carried out due to repeated fires. Some of the old buildings built during the early 17th century, are designated as national important cultural properties. The temple is also host to traditional festivities that include Shitennoji Wasso in November and the Doya-Doya in January.

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