• Nara Park's photo

Nara Park

Nara City


Todai-ji Temple, Kofuku-ji Temple, and Kasugataisha Shrine - Nara’s most famous spots are all in Nara Park!

When looking at a map of Nara you’ll be amazed at the wide open green space in the center. This spot is approximately 660 hectares. When compared with the 340 hectares of New York’s Central Park, you can easily see how large it is. The inside of the park is dotted with famous locations such as Todai-ji Temple, where the Great Buddha is enshrined, Kofuku-ji Temple, where the three-faced, six-armed Ashura statue resides, and the magnificent vermillion-lacquered halls of Kasugataisha Shrine. One of the charms of Nara is visiting these famous places in the rich natural setting of the park.

  • Nara Park's photo
  • Nara Park's photo

The main attraction of Nara Park are the deer, seen as messengers of the gods!

Temples aren’t the only attraction at Nara Park. The main attraction are the deer that leisurely stroll through the park. Over 1,000 deer live between Kofuku-ji Temple in the west and Mt. Wakakusa in the east. Amazingly, these are truly “wild” deer! Nara has a long history and connection with the deer, where classic Japanese poems about the deer were composed from 1,200 years ago. These deer are revered in this area as the messengers of the gods in Kasugataisha Shrine. Deer are still considered sacred creatures by the people of Nara.

  • Nara Park's photo
  • Nara Park's photo
  • Nara Park's photo
  • Nara Park's photo

If you want to get close to the deer, remember shika yose (deer call) and shika sembei (deer crackers).

The deer in Nara Park are wild. Although their main diet is grass, you can feed them shika sembei, or deer crackers sold in the park as a snack. The sembei are sold everywhere in the park at 10 crackers for 150 yen, and if you buy some you’re sure to be surrounded by deer! Some deer who want a snack will humorously bow many times. The shika yose performance is used to gather deer in Nara Park. When a horn is blown, the deer are drawn by the sound, gathering nearby. Be sure to remember these two keywords if you want to get close to some deer.

  • Nara Park's photo
  • Nara Park's photo
  • Nara Park's photo
  • Nara Park's photo
  • Nara Park's photo

Mochi over deer? Then come see the famous high-speed mochi making process!

Lastly, let’s take a look at Nakatanidou, the Japanese sweet shop near Nara Park that has recently become famous. At first glance it seems like an average store, but then you notice the crowds of people. They are all watching the amazing high-speed mochi making process. Movies of this process are famous even overseas, and have been viewed over 400,000 times on YouTube. Freshly-made mochi cakes are especially delicious! Why not stop by and watch the techniques of these sweet-making masters?

For reference

Nara Park

  • Address
    Noboriojicho, Takahatacho, Kasugano, Zoshicho, Nara-shi, Nara-ken
  • Telephone
    0742-22-0375 (Nara Park Office)
  • Hours
    Park can be entered anytime.
  • Price
    Free of charge
  • Access
    Kansai International Airport is a 1 hour, 45 minute flight from New Chitose Airport.
    Kansai International Airport is a one hour flight from Haneda Airport.
    Kansai International Airport is a 1 hour, 20 minute flight from Narita Airport.
    Kansai International Airport is a 1 hour, 15 minute flight from Fukuoka Airport.
    Kansai International Airport is a 2 hour, 20 minute flight from Naha Airport.
    Take the shuttle bus from Kansai International Airport to Kintetsunara Station (approx.1 hr. 25 min).
    Or take the Nankai Electric Railway from Kansai International Airport via Kintetsu Namba Station to Kintetsunara Station (1 hr. 30 min.).
    The park is a 15 minute walk from the station.

Nakatanidou

  • Address
    29 Hashimoto-cho, Nara-shi, Nara-ken
  • Open
    9:00 A.M. to 7:00 P.M.
  • Price
    130 yen for yomogi mochi
  • Access
    Kansai International Airport is a 1 hour, 45 minute flight from New Chitose Airport.
    Kansai International Airport is a 1 hour flight from Haneda Airport.
    Kansai International Airport is a 1 hour, 20 minute flight from Narita Airport.
    Kansai International Airport is a 1 hour, 15 minute flight from Fukuoka Airport.
    Kansai International Airport is a 2 hour, 20 minute flight from Naha Airport.
    Take the shuttle bus from Kansai International Airport to Kintetsunara Station (approx.1 hr. 25 min).
    Or take the Nankai Electric Railway from Kansai International Airport via Kintetsu Namba Station to Kintetsunara Station (1 hr. 30 min.).
    Nakatanidou is a 5 minute walk from the station.

Map

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