Ushiku Things to Do

  • The million golden Buddhas
    The million golden Buddhas
    by joiwatani
  • More golden Buddhas
    More golden Buddhas
    by joiwatani
  • Looking around the million golden buddhas
    Looking around the million golden...
    by joiwatani

Most Recent Things to Do in Ushiku

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    You can't miss the 1st Floor!

    by joiwatani Updated Dec 21, 2008

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    I just found out that I did my tips backwards. Do you know why? Because you don't really go to the first floor first. How did that happen?

    The guided tour goes to the fifth floor first and then you go down to the next level. We took the elevator going up all the way to the 5th floor which is the head of the Buddha.

    Then we don't take the elevator going down. We are not allowed to take the elevator. The only exception is when you have disability! In this way, you are able to see all the exhibits from the 5th floor, 4th floor, 3rd floor, 2nd floor to the first floor.

    The 1st Floor is called "The World of Infinite Light and Life". Over here, the first floor is totally dark. Then a light comes out coming from the top. Then your eyes are focused on the lights lighting the Golden Buddhas. The feeling is over-powering. The silence and the darkness - together makes you concentrate on your senses...

    In the pamphlet given to us at the ticketing office of Ushiku Daibutsu, it says: "The deep and big heart of Amitabha Buddha always surrounds us. This floor is filled with reliefs of silence and mystery."

    This was what I felt. The silence and the total darkness made me feel spiritual...

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    Go to the 2nd Floor of the Ushiku Daibutsu!

    by joiwatani Updated Dec 21, 2008

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    The stairs going down the the Ushiku Daibutsu
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    Take the stairs going down to the second floor of the Ushiku Daibutsu. You are no longer on the head of the Buddha but actually in the body of the Buddha. Taking the stairs is better because you see more of the exhibits. They have tons of pictures on the wall, lots of information to read and more displays of arts and crafts to buy. There is an array of tables filled with mementos from tiny buddha's, postcards, key chains, maneki-nikko figurines and others. There are also postcards to buy in each and every floor.

    The second floor is about 10m high. If you are travelling with friends or family with disability, you can use the elevator. There is an usher to lead you there. They are very friendly and very helpful...

    The second floor is actually called the "The World of Gratitude and Thankfulnees". This is the place where you copy the sutra with your heart for Amitabha Buddha. I don't really know what this means, unfortunately. I forgot to ask.

    There are about 77 seats in the second floor. When we were there we were so quiet like a mouse because there were people praying. Remember to be mindful of people who are praying. Because of this, I didn't take pictures because I needed a flash on my camera and to use one might disturb the people praying...

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    Go to 3rd Floor (World of the Lotus Santuary)

    by joiwatani Updated Dec 21, 2008

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    The world of the Lotus Sanctuary represents the Pure Land. It is the golden world that surrounded the approximately 3, 300 images of Buddha.

    In here, they accept offer to hold a memorial service for the dead. Talisman is also available for sale.

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    The bigger the Buddha, the bigger the donation!

    by joiwatani Updated Dec 21, 2008

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    The medium sized Golden Buddha
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    The local residents donated the golden buddhas inside the Ushiku Buddha. If you look closer at the buddhas, the names of the donors are etched on a plate including how much they have donated. The small buddhas cost $1,000.00 each and there are millions of them. The medium size Buddhas cost about $5,000.00.

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    Visit the Ushiku Buddha garden

    by joiwatani Updated Dec 21, 2008

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    The bonsai trees
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    The Ushiku Buddha garden is beautiful. There are different well manicured garden with bonsai, bamboos and other trees. My sister told me that in Spring time, the garden is filled with flowers. However, this time of year, which is November when I visited Ushiku, the flowers are gone. The bonsai are beautiful though.

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    The Buddha's toe is taller than me!

    by joiwatani Updated Dec 21, 2008

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    The great big toe of the Ushiku Buddha
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    Imagine how tall the Ushiku Buddha is. It is taller than the Empire State building. Then, imagine, how big his toe is!

    One of the toes of Buddha is inside the building on display so people can see how it was made and built.

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    Make a donation and make a wish!

    by joiwatani Updated Dec 21, 2008

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    The million golden Buddhas
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    As we walked past the pictures of how the Ushiku Buddha was made, there is a place where you can write down your wish. Then you hang this paper of your wish. It is said that your wish will come true!

    I forgot what I had written. But, I am hoping that my wish will come true!

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    Go to 4-5th floors (80-85 meters high

    by joiwatani Updated Dec 21, 2008

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    The room of Mt. Grdharakuta. Mt. Grdharkuta is a name of the Indian place remebered in conneciton with Buddha. There are windows at every four direcitons. You can look out East, West, South and North

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    Please remove your shoes before you enter!

    by joiwatani Updated Dec 21, 2008

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    Plastic bags for shoes per my bro-in-law
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    Before you enter any holy ground, make sure to remove your shoes to show respect and reverence to the place. There are plastic bags hanging in-front of the building of the Ushiku Buddha especially available for visitors. Remove your shoes and put them in the plactic bag and carry it with you before you get into the elevator.

    The Ushiku Buddha building is well-carpeted. So, there is no worry about getting your feet dirty!

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    Hit the gong before you enter the place

    by joiwatani Updated Dec 21, 2008

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    Whew, how heavy is that? I have to hit the gong!
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    When you are in Rome, do what the Romans do! Yes, this saying applies here at the Ushiku's Buddha. We were told to hit the gong first before we enter. So, that's what we did. I have to count six steps on a mini bridge (I followed the footprints that were already marked on the bridge) and pulled the long rope that linked to the gong. I hit it so hard with all my strength to let it known that I am entering the Ushiku Buddha!

    BLOGGH! BLOGGH! BLOGGH! The gong echoed all over the well-landscaped surroundings of the Buddha. It echoed on top of trees and probably all the way to the valleys and hills!

    Then, I proceeded to enter into the Ushiku Buddha's spiritual grounds.

    That's quite an experience. This is a sacred place so I have to respect their practice and their traditions!

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    See how they built the Buddha

    by joiwatani Updated Dec 21, 2008

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    The construction of the  head of the Buddha
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    You have to slow down on your way to the top of the Buddha. There are so many black and white pictures set up in series that depict the construction of the Buddha. There are pictures of how the Japanese constructed just the "big toe" of the Buddha. The enormous amount of cement poured on the toe and the steel that were put on the toe was just amazing to know.

    The picture of the detailed construction of the "Head of the Buddha" is also awesome. The pictures of helicopters hoovering around to lift the head of the Buddha and attach it to the body is just an amazing sight.

    The pictures are fixed to the walls inside the Buddha on the second floor. There is also the "Buddha's toe" that was constructed and displayed on the floor.

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    Dog-friendly Property

    by torototammy Written Apr 15, 2004

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    BBQ with Yoshio

    I've taken my dog to Chateau twice. The first time was on a rainy "hanami" Sunday(cherry blossom viewing season). Even though it was raining, the propery was full of visitors and there were some traffic control guys there. Everyone was nice to Yoshio, talked to her "Come on in, doggy."

    The next time we went there on a weekday after the cherry blossom viewing season. People were putting away the extra tents and BBQ tables so no one was having BBQ outside but in the building. Thanks to the kind staff, we could use the BBQ table in the garden with our dog.

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    Chateau Kamiya

    by torototammy Updated Apr 15, 2004

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    Gate building

    As I mentioned on my intro, It used to be a winery. They no longer produce wine here but you can still enjoy yourself here.

    In the property, there are 3 restraunts, a cafe, a wine celler , a souvenir shop and the winery museum. It also has BBQ facilities in the garden.

    Oops, forgot to mention the chapel.
    I had my big day here!

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    you must see it

    by solo_mc Written Oct 1, 2003

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    Actually it should be included into the must-see-activities of Tsukuba... but maybe it deserves its own page. That is a nice excuse to make an excuse of a page. Anyway, every person coming to Tsukuba must pay a visit to the great buddha of Ushiku... or the Ushiku Dai Butsu. Dai, means great like in the great Napoleon (even if at the end of the road he resulted being rather small) or the great wall, that being a wall is not that great anymore. But, here Buddha said it: every thing that has shape have an end.

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    House Brewed Beer and Wine

    by torototammy Written Apr 15, 2004

    There is a micro brewery in the property of Chateau Kamiya. You can enjoy the freshly brewed beer or ale at the garden BBQ or other restaurants here.

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