Natsumi Hai-ji (the Former Natsumi-ji Temple) (夏見廃寺)

Natsumi Hai-ji is a site of a demolished temple which existed at Natsumi, Nabari City, Mie Prefecture from the Asuka period to the Nara period.

It was designated as a national historic site on March 8, 1990.

Summary

It was once covered by a copse, but now it is maintained as a part of Nabari City Central Park, and the foundations of Kondo (main hall of a Buddhist temple), To (pagoda), Kodo (lecture hall) and surrounding hottatebashira-tatemono (dug-standing pillar buildings) are preserved, and have been restored and exhibited.

Kondo of Natsumi Hai-ji is known to have had the same form as that of Yamada-dera Temple in Asuka, and this is said to imply that it was strongly connected with the central government.

Erection

"Yakushiji Engi" (The History of Yakushi-ji Temple) which was written at the beginning of the 11th century contains a description of Shofuku-ji Temple which was built at the wish of Oku no Himemiko (Princess Oku) in remembrance of her dead father, Emperor Tenmu in Nabari County, Iga Province, and it is supposed that Natsumi Hai-ji was that Shofuku-ji Temple.

There is a phrase (甲牛年) that mentions the year 694 written on the Shumidan (a platform or dais for Buddhist image) part of the excavated Ogata-tason-senbutsu (a large clay tile with many Buddha figures), and it is thought that the temple itself was also erected around this year

Excavation and Research

While since before World War II the local people had known that old roof tiles were scattered around there, immediately after the war, in May, 1946, the ruins of the temple were found through excavation and research by Department of Archaeology, Kyoto University. The research made some facts clear such as that the temple was burnt out around the end of the 10th century.

Natsumi Hai-ji Exhibition Hall

Near Natsumi Hai-ji stands the Natsumi Hai-ji Exhibition Hall, which explains an displays the artifacts of Natsumi Hai-ji, clay tiles with Buddha figures with which it has been said Kondo was decorated, and so on. It opened in 1995.

Hours of Opening

Visitors can enter anywhere except the Exhibition Hall, any time in a day and any day in a year.

Hours of opening: 9 A.M. - 5 P.M.

The days the Hall is closed: Monday, Thursday, December 28 - January 3 (However, if a national holiday fall on Monday or Thursday, it is closed the next day).

Entrance Fee

Natsumi Hai-ji Exhibition Hall: Adult \200, Senior high school student \100, Junior high school and Elementary school student Free, Group (Adult) \150, Group (Senior high school student) Free.

The other places: Free.

Location and Access

Location:

From 'Natsumi' or 'Shiyakusho-mae' crossing of National Route 165, for Nabari City Central Park. The parking area in the park is available.

If you use public transportation, you walk 30 minutes from Nabari Station of Kintetsu Corporation Osaka Line, or take a bus and get off at 'Natsumi,' and walk 10 minutes.