Chuo Temple (Chuo-ji)

Zen Course ¥500
Opening Hours9 am - 5 pm

NotesZen lesson runs from 9am - midday
Lessons available in English
Location /
Getting There
2 Chome-1 Minami 6 Jonishi, Chuo Ward, Sapporo, Hokkaido Prefecture 064-0806


Chuo-ji is a Buddhist Temple located in downtown Sapporo, in Susukino (the entertainment district). It is not a big temple in regards to temples in Japan but its a good temple to go and check out and experience a little of the Japanese culture. The entrance is framed by a two story gate. The gate, as typical with most Buddhist temples, is guarded by the Nio or Kongōrikishi. These two muscle bound guardians are carved from wood and according to Japanese tradition, travelled with Gautama Buddha to protect him. These two characters, named Agyō and Ungyō, together symbolize the birth and death of all things. The entrance is a nice spot to take some photos.

Chuo-ji practises ‘zazen’. Zen is the belief that every human being is born with clear minds and the capacity to live in an open-minded way. Chuo-ji is free to enter but they do offer Zen classes for a fee of ¥500 which is held in the Temple Zazen Hall. This is held on Sundays and they offer this course in English! The program is 3 hours and runs until midday, so why not try something new AND relaxing!

8:20 amZazen instruction (for newcomers)
9:00 amZazen begins
9:30 amKinhin (walking meditation)
9:35 amTeisho (dharma talk)

2nd zazen session
10:05 amKinhin (walking meditation)
10:10 amFukanzazengi chant
10:20 am
Zazen Hall cleaning period
11:10 amTea and discussion
11:50 amZazenkai ends
Posted in Sightseeing


Hokkaido Guide contributor and editor. Keen photographer with a love of travel, the great outdoors and all things Hokkaido, Japan. Matt Holloway is a professional photographer and holds exhibitions around Sapporo, Hokkaido and Sydney Australia.