Updated: November 19, 2016
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Nara Park - The Best Park To Feel Japanese Deerness
Have you ever been to Nara Park? So many deers, beautiful nature, Great Buddha...etc. It's worth visiting!! Also wonderful place to visit with your kids. Check this amazing place!!
How to get to Nara Park
If you’re planning a trip to Japan and love animals and beautiful scenery, then Nara Park is the place to go. Nara Park, established in 1800, is a large park that extends about 4 kilometers from east to west and about 2 kilometers from north to south. Located in the city of Nara, Nara Park is just a 5-minute walk from the Kintetsu Nara Station or a 20-minute walk from the JR Nara Station. You can also reach Nara Park through the various local buses that stop there.
Nara Park is home to beautiful historical structures such as the Todai-ji temple and Kasuga Taisha shrine as well as 1,200 freely roaming wild shika deer.
The Legend of the Deer
According to Shinto legends, a Japanese god was said to have been riding on a white deer, and as such, deer are considered to be the messengers of gods and were treated as sacred animals. In ancient times, killing a deer was considered to be a serious offense and was punishable by death. After World War II, deer no longer have a divine status but are considered instead as a national treasure and remain protected by the government to this day.
The shika deer are tame in nature; however, they are known to be aggressive at times, too, especially when it’s the mating season or if they think you have food. Deer crackers are sold at various places around the park, so they know you can feed them. Not all deer are aggressive as some are known to bow to visitors, too. It really depends on the deer you happen to come across.
What else to do in Nara Park?
Once you’re done taking pictures and feeding the deer, fret not as there are still many things you can do. You can visit the famous Buddhist temple Todai-ji. One of the largest wooden structures in the world, Todai-ji houses the 15-meter high Great Buddha and is listed as one of many UNESCO World Heritage Sites.
Kasuga Taisha, Kofuku-ji temple, and the Nara National Museum
There is also Kasuga Taisha, which is famous for the hundreds of stone and bronze lanterns that were all donated by worshippers.
Besides, there is also the Kofuku-ji temple, which used to be one of the powerful Seven Great Temples.
Lastly, there is the Nara National Museum where many Buddhist sculptures and pieces of art can be found.
See the beauty of Nara Park for yourself!
All in all, Nara Park is a great place for tourists at any age with plenty of activities suitable for the old and young. With plenty of trees and small streams and ponds scattered all through Nara Park, a feast for the eyes is definitely guaranteed.
- I like writing about traveling around Japan and other things.
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