The Tenmangu Shrine is home to the Tenjin festival every year on July 24 and 25, one of the top 3 most popular traditional festivals in Japan.
A visit to Tenmangu Temple
Walking past Tenmangu shrine on an ordinary day, the temple complex may look like one of the hundreds, if not thousands of other temples in Japan. Yet with over 1000 years of history Tenmangu is one of Osaka’s most important shrines and host to the Tenjin festival, that is attended by millions each year.
Founded in the 10th century, Osaka Tenmangu is dedicated to Sugawara no Michizane, the deity of scholarship. Within Shinto Buddhism, he became known as Tenma Tenjin, or simply just Tenjin. Students and scholars wishing to do well in their upcoming exams may come to Tenmangu to pray to Tenjin, or get a special lucky charm.
Tenmangu is located in the middle of a busy shopping and office district of Kita-Osaka, but usually pretty quiet. As such, it’s a calm place to come for contemplation. Take a moment to step out of the busy streets and walk around the shine. For a moment, it's like stepping into another world.
The famous Tenjin Festival
With over 1.5 million visitors, the Tenjin Matsuri is one of the largest 3 seasonal festivals held in Japan, celebrated annually on July 24 and 25. The festival starts with a traditional procession at the temple, followed by parades through the city. On day two the celebration continues with a river procession. The festival concludes with a massive fireworks display. Of course there is ample opportunity for street food and drinks, throughout the festival.
Getting to Tenmangu Temple
The temple is closely located to the station called JR Osaka Tenmangu station on the JR Tozai-Gakkentoshi Line. From Osaka station, the fastest way to get there is using the JR Osaka Loop Line to Kyobashi station, there transfer to the Tozai-line bound Tenmangu. The route is fully covered by the Japan Rail Pass.