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Kasuisai Hinamatsuri: Video Introduction

This video, titled "Shizuoka Kasuisai Temple Doll's Festival, Japan Worship Trip | Recommended spots | Travel / vlog,"was uploaded by "Japan Travel Cinema."

Kasuisai Hinamatsuri (Doll Festival) is held at Kasuisai Temple in Shizuoka Prefecture; a temple associated with Tokugawa Ieyasu. The 32-tiered display with approximately 1,200 hina dolls, is one of the largest in Japan, and is truly a sight to behold.

In addition to ordinary hina dolls, rare hina ornaments, kasafuku umbrellas, sarubobo, etc. can be seen on display in the video. The video also introduces Daitosu, a unisex restroom said to be the most beautiful toilet in Japan.

Be sure to check out the video to get a glimpse of one of the largest Hinamatsuri events in Japan at Kasuisai Temple.

Kasuisai, a Temple Associated With Tokugawa Ieyasu

Image of Kasuisai Temple, Fukuroi, Shizuoka
Photo:Kasuisai Temple, Fukuroi, Shizuoka

Kasuisai Temple is a Soto Zen temple located in Fukuroi, Shizuoka, in the Tokai region of Japan. The temple, famous for the Kasuisai Hinamatsuri, was founded by the Buddhist priest Jochu Tengin in 1401, in the early Muromachi period (1336-1573 AD).

The 11th chief priest, Senrin Tozen, is said to have been associated with the Tokugawa family since he was responsible for Tokugawa Ieyasu's childhood education. The name of the temple is derived from the fact that Ieyasu, feeling indebted to him, invited the monk Tozen to the castle to renew their old friendship.

When Ieyasu saw him dozing off during that visit, he was pleased that the monk was relieved and showed his affection, saying, "Monk, you must sleep," thus giving rise to the name of the temple as "Kasuisai" (可睡斎, lit. "Temple where one may sleep").

At Kasuisai Temple, memorial services are held for dolls and stuffed animals that have watched over children as the grew over the years, and some of the dolls are displayed at the Kasuisai Hinamatsuri event.

Kasuisai Hinamatsuri 2023 Highlights!

Kasuisai Hinamatsuri 2023 will be held from January 1 to March 31. It's generally held during the same period each year. The limited edition shuin stamps available during the festival are popular among collectors.

From January 22 to March 12, visitors can enjoy special vegetarian meals prepared by one of the temple administrators/head chef of Kasuisai. If you're interested in trying Buddhist vegetarian cuisine using healthy spring ingredients, be sure to make a reservation in advance.

Children who visit the temple will receive a doll talisman to pray for their healthy growth. It's a great way to commemorate your visit.

It takes about four and a half hours to tour the entirety Kasuisai Temple. Please take your time and enjoy temple, which has plenty to see and do.

Next, let's take a look at the various highlights of Kasuisai Hinamatsuri in detail.

Zuiryukaku – 1,200 Dolls on Display at One of the Largest 32-Tiered Displays in Japan!

Image of Hina dolls, Fukuroi, Shizuoka
Photo:Hina dolls, Fukuroi, Shizuoka

During Kasuisai Hinamatsuri, there are more than 3,000 hina dolls on display throughout the temple. The most spectacular of them all are the hina dolls displayed in Zuiryukaku. The 32-tiered Hina-dan, one of the largest hina doll displays in Japan, with approximately 1,200 dolls on display, is nothing short of spectacular. It's sure to be a hit on Instagram!
[Video] 2:25 - Zuiryukaku, a 32-Tiered Hinadan With Approximately 1,200 Hina Dolls

The 3.5-meter-tall, 50-kilogram kasafuku is displayed on the opposite side of the hall. Kasafuku is one of the three major tsurushi-kazari (hanging ornaments) in Japan, made in and around Sakai, Yamagata. The 999 hanging ornaments, including small hammers, turtles, and other lucky ornaments, are so gorgeous that just looking at them brings good luck.
[Video] 3:40 - Kasafuku Umbrellas

In the video, you can also see Goten-style hina decorations. Goten-kazari is a dollhouse-like decoration with hina dolls representing the emperor and empress placed inside a palace, which is based on the Imperial Palace in Kyoto.
[Video] 5:33 - Goten-style Hina Decorations

The sarubobo decoration, which is said to bring blessings for fertility and easy childbirth, is another signature of Kasuisai Hinamatsuri. The 2,000 sarubobo decorations hung like hanging ornaments are also a special feature of Kasuisai Hinamatsuri.
[Video] 5:56 - Sarubobo

The Official Doll of Tokugawa Ieyasu, a Famous Japanese Warlord

At this year's Kasuisai Hinamatsuri, the treasury will host an exhibit related to prince Tokugawa Ieyasu in conjunction with "Dou Suru Ieyasu," this year's taiga drama (historical drama series).

Shikami dolls modeled after the portrai Tokugawa Ieyasu is said to have had painted after his defeat by Takeda Shingen in the Battle of Mikatahara, a Senrin Tozen and Ieyasu doll modeled after an anecdote with Senrin Tozen, from which the name Kasuisai was derived, and five national treasures, including Hamamatsu Castle and Sunpu Castle made from toothpicks, are also on display. It's a must-see event for those who love Japanese history and Tokugawa Ieyasu.

Explore a Lovely Indoor Peony Garden

Image of the indoor peony garden at Kasuisai Temple
Photo:The indoor peony garden at Kasuisai Temple

Kasuisai is also famous as a temple of flowers, especially for its peony garden, which is at its best from April to May.

During Kasuisai Hinamatsuri, visitors can enjoy the peony blossoms earlier than usual. The indoor peony garden is located at Zuiryukaku. The 70 pots of peonies, with approximately 20 different varieties, are sure to captivate your heart.

The fusuma-e (sliding door paintings) in the Japanese-style room decorated with peonies are also worth checking out! The fusuma paintings were created by Reiki Yamaguchi, a Japanese painter who spent 40 years painting them. The atmospheric fusuma paintings by Yamaguchi, who painted the traditional themes of natural beauty in Japanese aesthetics, accentuate the beauty of the peony blossoms.
[Video] 6:24 - The Indoor Peony Garden

Daitosu, the Toilet of the Toilet God!

Image of Daitotsu, the toilet at Kasuisai Temple
Photo:Daitotsu, the toilet at Kasuisai Temple

Kasuisai Temple also has what is claimed to be the best toilet in Japan! Called Daitosu, it's a unisex flush toilet that was completed in 1937. At the time of its completion, many people came to use it, as flush toilets were rare in Japan.

The ceiling is decorated with a beautifully shaded wicker pattern, and modern lighting on the domed ceiling, creating a retro Japanese atmosphere.
In the center is the powerful image of Ucchusma, known in Zen Buddhism as the Buddha of the toilet, who is believed to burn impure things. It's a once-in-a-lifetime masterpiece by Seiun Takamura, a well-known artist of wooden Buddhist sculptures. The beautifully polished Daitosu is also amazingly still in use as a toilet.
[Video] 4:37- Daitosu
[Video] 5:08 - Ucchusma

Summary of Kasuisai Hinamatsuri

Kasuisai Hinamatsuri is one of the largest hina doll festivals in Japan. The hinamatsuri event is held under the teaching "treasure the lives of things," after the doll memorial service has been completed.
Travel agencies offer hinamatsuri tours for Kasuisai Hinamatsuri. There are also many hotels and other lodging facilities in the area surrounding Kasuisai. If you're considering Shizuoka Prefecture as a spring travel destination, be sure to stop by! If you have children with you, it's a great opportunity to wish them healthy growth and nurture their appreciation of life.
We're sure that the beautiful hina dolls, given a new lease of life, will bring you joy.

◆Kasuisai Temple◆
【Address】2915-1 Kuno, Fukuroi, Shizuoka 437-0061
【Hours】8:00 a.m. - 4:30 p.m.
【Admission Fee】¥500
Train: Train: Get off at JR Fukuroi Station. Board the train bound for Enshu Morimachi (遠州森町) or Keta (気多) at platform No. 1 at the north exit, and get off at Kasuisai Iriguchi (可睡斎入口).

Written By
Last Updated : Jan. 24, 2023
平敷 篤(Atsushi Heishiki)
My name is Atsushi Heishiki, a writer who loves Japanese culture and lives in Okinawa.
Kasuisai Hinamatsuri 2023 – Highlights of the Doll Festival Associated With Tokugawa Ieyasu! 1,200 Hina Dolls Decorated With an Important Message in Shizuoka Prefecture
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