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Risshaku-ji Temple

Closed Now: 8:00 AM - 5:00 PM
Open today: 8:00 AM - 5:00 PM
Review Highlights
Snowy fantasy world

Yamadera in winter is snowy fantasy world. I Sent picture of Yamadera to my friend and he thought I... read more

Reviewed 4 weeks ago
Dumbell M
via mobile
Where is the escalator?

Only a ~20 minute ride with the JR Senzan line away from Yamagata city, this is a must-visit when... read more

Reviewed 19 September 2018
Munich, Germany
via mobile
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  • Excellent54%
  • Very good38%
  • Average6%
  • Poor1%
  • Terrible1%
Travelers talk about
“day trip”(6 reviews)
“stone steps”(4 reviews)
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Hours Today: 8:00 AM - 5:00 PM
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4456-1 Yamadera, Yamagata 999-3301, Yamagata Prefecture
+81 23-695-2843
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All reviews day trip stone steps worth the climb beautiful view souvenir shops observation deck thousand steps bring water main hall the cliff soba noodles step climb tall trees half hour heavy snow coin lockers train ride
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1 - 10 of 75 reviews
Reviewed 4 weeks ago via mobile

Yamadera in winter is snowy fantasy world. I Sent picture of Yamadera to my friend and he thought I was in Skyrim. Also be careful about snow it's very slippery but you can borrow snow shoes from information. I definetly recommend to eat tamakonyaku.

Date of experience: January 2019
Thank Dumbell M
Reviewed 19 September 2018 via mobile

Only a ~20 minute ride with the JR Senzan line away from Yamagata city, this is a must-visit when in the area. Even if you think that the more temples you visit, the more they start to look alike, this one is different as the...More

Date of experience: September 2018
1  Thank chr1st0ph
Reviewed 3 September 2018

My husband and I were very fortunate to experience a half day at the Yamadera Mountain Temple. This was one of many sites in the general area we were taken to by our Japan Holidays tour guide. We took a short, half-hour local train from...More

Date of experience: June 2018
1  Thank 1TahoeQueen
Reviewed 30 August 2018

There were a lot more stairs than I'd expected but it was absolutely stunning and I am so, so glad I went and I am so, so going back. It was smaller than I'd thought but still a very good sized temple. And there were...More

Date of experience: August 2018
Thank Sarahuhuhu
Reviewed 6 August 2018

Risshaku-ji is the mountain temple that gives Yamadera it's name. There are just over 1000 stairs to the top, but there are plenty of views to be had along the way. From ancient Buddhist stone carvings and architecture to massive Japanese cedar trees, this is...More

Date of experience: July 2018
Thank DS23091
Reviewed 23 July 2018

Some exercise is required when visiting this shrine, but it is well worth it. It's good to go early in the day (9am) during July, as the stairs on their own will have you sweating and there's no crowds to deal with. Three opportunities to...More

Date of experience: July 2018
Thank Michelle C
Reviewed 22 June 2018

As others have noted, this is a religious and historically-important site with beautiful view and gentle winding climb up over a thousand steps among huge trees, small statues and stones, caves and pock-marked cliffs. But what makes it really special is the two temples up...More

Date of experience: June 2018
Thank Janis857
Reviewed 21 June 2018

Walking up to this temple and then enjoying the spectacular view was one of my Japan trip highlights. About 45 mins from Sendai or 20 minutes from Yamagata on JR local trains. You need a couple of hours round trip from the Yamadera station. Allow...More

Date of experience: June 2018
1  Thank AndyandCathy
Reviewed 20 June 2018 via mobile

It’s worth the hike on over 1000 steps to the clusters of temples on the hill! The scenery (and greenery) was breathtaking. There were quite many visitors on the day of our visit but we didn’t feel crowded.

Date of experience: June 2018
Thank ShiningSchnee
Reviewed 11 May 2018 via mobile

Perhaps I had my expectations too high from online reviews or it could be due to the crowds during our visit to Yamadera, but we were underwhelmed by the sights nor experience in this attraction. Still, do visit this unique temple complex when you are...More

Date of experience: May 2018
Thank 382ypc
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Questions & Answers
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19 August 2018|
AnswerShow all 3 answers
Response from 1TahoeQueen | Reviewed this property |
I also agree that a half day here is perfect! Stay in Yamagata, where there are more city sites to see (museums, parks and the fabulous train station mall). It's about a 25 min train ride to Yamadera - very convenient.
14 July 2018|
AnswerShow all 3 answers
Response from FrankMtler | Reviewed this property |
I would think it is. There is so many people climbing the steps on a daily basis that my feeling is it would be practical even during winter. We were there in late March and I've seen women climbing in high heels. I would... More
5 April 2018|
AnswerShow all 5 answers
Response from 1TahoeQueen | Reviewed this property |
My husband and I are 63 and 62, and we did stop and rest now and then on the way up. I saw probably a dozen seniors well over 75 doing the same steps. DO bring water with electrolytes to prevent cramping. Going back down is... More