Nara Park is infamous for its deers that freely roam the complex. It is located in the city of Nara in Japan, an hour from Osaka. The public park was established in the 1300s. It is one of the oldest parks in Japan. The park has shrines around the area as well as gardens and parks. There are also a number of restaurants and stores that line up the street from the station and walking to Nara park.
HOW TO GET THERE
We came from Osaka Castle so what we did is take the train of the Osaka Loop line and transfer at Osaka Station to take the train going to Nara. Getting to Nara is quite easy as there are a lot of train companies that go there. You can go through JR Nara Station or Kintetsu Nara Station. There was a tourist information office there. We arrived at around 3:30 pm and the guy recommended that we take the bus to go to the Todaiji Shrine as all the shrines close at 5pm so maybe we have time to only see one. Going back to the station, we just took a walk.
The Todai-ji shrine is a buddhist temple complex housing the biggest bronze statue of the Buddha in the world. It is also listed as a Unesco World Heritage site.
From the bus stop, you have to walk a bit to go to the temple. At the beginning of the street, there were stores that line up the street. It’s the best place to buy the cookies which are food for the deer. That’s why deers come to people was because of this cookie.
At the front of Todai-ji temple, there are imposing structures that are carved from wood. There was one on both side of the gate. They were covered in mesh.
Entry is 1000 yen but we did not go in because we didn’t think it was worth it given the short time that we had. We just took a photo from the front and googled what the Buddha looked like. Haha.
There were plenty of deers – all over. So, it was not hard to find some. Deers are believed to be messenger of the Gods in the Shinto religion. We bought those cookies and had them eating on the palm of our hands. After they take the bite though, they just go on their own way. It was really nice. I was surprised how friendly they are.
If you are in the Osaka area, it’s a must see. We enjoyed our visit at Nara park. I thought it was gonna be boring but it was not at all. I found it fascinating and would recommend it to anyone.