Another wee Japanese town 10km south-west of Nara, Horyu-ji is home to the magnificent Horyu-ji temple. A world heritage site since 1993, this temple has the distinct honour of containing the world’s oldest wooden structure.

It mightn’t look like it (and it looks like about a billion other old Japanese temple buildings) but this thing is over 1200 years old…for a Japanese building, that’s an awful lot of disasters, wars and other potential hazardry.


Next door is Japan’s oldest five-tier pagoda…


Along with Todai-ji, Horyu-ji makes for an excellent day’s templing…and, as the lady at the tourist information office rightly said, give yourself a good two hours to enjoy Horyu-ji.

The sun even made a guest appearance…