Wednesday, March 31, 2010
The town of Narita is most famous for it's International Airport, but the temple complex of Narita-san is quite a bit more fun to visit. Founded in 940 AD, Narita-san has grown from a sleepy provincial temple to a large complex that is one of the most famous Buddhist temples in the Kanto region.
The first weeks orientation here in Japan was held in Narita City, right across the street from the airport. Going into Tokyo in the evenings was out, but exploring Narita city was a necessity after long days spent absorbing all the information needed to live and teach in Japan.
Walking through the darkened temple was certainly a highlight of the training period, and it is a shame that only a handful of the hundred or so new hires made it there. I was surprised to find such a large and beautiful temple perched in a town known more as a gateway to bigger and better things than as a destination in its own right. It just goes to show that when you are traveling, your preconceived notions are the first to go.