Zojo-ji is one of the seven Daihonzan (head temples) of Jodo-shu Buddhism and contains many designated Cultural Properties. It is also where the souls of the Tokugawa clan are mourned.
Founded in 1393 by eighth monshu (school head) Yuyo Shoso as a Jodo-shu Buddhist temple, Zojo-ji Temple is best known as the place of mourning for the Tokugawa clan. The temple grounds contain a number of designated Cultural Properties and Treasures. Upon arriving at the temple, the first thing you see is a magnificent, vermilion-lacquered gate — Sangedatsu-mon, or ”The Gate of Three Liberations.” This staggering wooden structure is the largest such gate in eastern Japan and an Important Cultural Property. The main hall with Tokyo Tower in the background can be often seen in tourist brochures. On the underground floor of the main hall is a treasure gallery built to commemorate the 400th anniversary of the death of Tokugawa Ieyasu, founder of the Tokugawa Shogunate. There are many historical valued displays including the scale model of the mausoleum of the second Tokugawa Shogun, Hidetada, whose posthumous Buddhist name was Taitokuin-den, which belongs to the Royal Collection. In the temple precincts, there are also many sight places including Tokugawa family graves and Ankokuden hall with a secret Buddha statue called Kuro Honzon (the Black Image of Amida Buddha), that is said to grant wishes for gainful luck. A three-minute walk from Onarimon Station on the Toei Mita Line.