??? Shinonoishiozaki, Nagano-shi, Nagano-ken 388-8014, Giappone
Hasedera Temple is located in the mountains east of central Sakurai. The temple was founded in 686, and now serves as the head temple of the Bunzan school of Shingon Buddhism. Situated in a valley, Hasedera has over 30 buildings built up along the hillside that visitors can spend a long time exploring. The main hall is at the very top and offers a great view of the surroundings from its balcony, particularly during the cherry blossom (sakura) and autumn color (koyo) seasons. The approach to Hasedera consists of a small temple town, whose restaurants and merchants have been catering to temple visitors for centuries. At the base of the temple is the Niomon Gate with statues of guardian deities housed within. A long, covered corridor with almost 400 steps leads up to the main hall, passing a variety of other buildings. From the top, the view can be breathtaking, and during cherry blossoms or autumn colors the view itself can be reason enough to make the journey.