Kora-cho, Shiga

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Kora, Shiga (甲良町; Kora-chō)
Takatora Summit Takatora Summit in Kora 2010 More Kora photos here.
Map of Shiga with Kora highlighted
Google Map of Kora here.
Location Shiga Prefecture, Kinki region, Honshu island, JAPAN  
Population 7,155 (38 foreigners) (2014-06-01)
Area 13.62 km²
Town Centers Zaiji, Saimyoji 
Major Sights Saimyoji temple 
Major Gateways JR Kawase Station (Hikone), Ohmi Railway Amago Station 
Train Stations JR Tokaido/Biwako Line, Ohmi Railways 
Claim to Fame Birthplace of Lord Todo Takatora, Saimyoji temple (National Treasure)
Products
Neighbors Hikone, Aisho, Toyosato, Taga 
Old Name(s)
Keywords Takatora, Saimyoji, seseragi
Historical Persons Lord Todo Takatora, Kora Bungo-no-Kami Munehiro
Links Kora Articles | Kora Photos
Kora Tourist Information
Location
Phone 0749-38-5069 or 0749-38-5131 
Tourist Links Tourism  
Int'l Association [Web site] Tel:  
Volunteer Guides Tel:  
Kora Town Hall 甲良町役場
Address Zaiji 353-1, Kora-cho, Inugami-gun, Shiga, JAPAN 〒522-0244 滋賀県犬上郡甲良町在士353-1
Phone/Fax (0749) 38-3311 
Official Site Japanese | English  
Symbols Flower:  Wisteria
Tree:  Japanese zelkova
Bird: 
Others:  Tora-nyan mascot
Logo:  LogoShigaKora.jpg
Sister Towns Nikko, Tochigi Prefecture

This page is 70% complete. Last updated: July 4, 2014

by Philbert Ono

Kora (甲良町; Kōra-chō) is a town in eastern Shiga Prefecture. It is mostly rural, flat, and focused on rice farming. Being next to Hikone, Kora residents rely on Hikone for medical, shopping, and leisure activities.

Kora is the birthplace of Lord Todo Takatora, a famous samurai daimyo and castle builder who became lord of Tsu Castle in Mie Prefecture. Kora is also home to Saimyoji temple, a National Treasure. Adding to the town's charm are flowers decorating the little roadside streams. As of July 2010, Kora has no official Web site for tourism in Kora.

Kora consists of several areas which used to be villages, such as Amago (尼子), Zaiji (在士), and Shimonogo (下之郷).

Sights

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Saimyoji temple Hachiman Shrine Takatora Park
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Takatora Summit in Kora 2010 Kora Shrine Shimonogo Sports Park

  • Saimyoji temple - One of the three Koto Sanzan Temple Trio of Tendai Buddhist temples in eastern Shiga. Established in 834, this temple is the northern-most one in the Koto Sanzan Temple Trio. The main temple hall, designated as Japan's first National Treasure, houses statues of gods with a carving of the 12 Oriental Zodiac signs on the head. During fall, the autumn leaves are brilliant, and you can enter the three-story pagoda (National Treasure) to see the wall paintings. Accessible by bus (infrequent) or taxi (20 min.) from JR Kawase Station. Buses run frequently from Amago Station and Kawase Station during the autumn foliage from mid-Nov. to early Dec. Admission 500 yen. Map
  • Zaiji Hachiman Shrine - The shrine is dedicated to the Todo clan as a warrior god. It branched off from Kyoto Iwashimizu Shrine and the founder of the Todo clan, Todo Kagemori, planted the wisteria in 1395. The Honden main hall was rebuilt in 1643 by Todo Takatora's heir, Todo Takatsugu. The centuries-old wisteria still blooms in early May. The name "Todo" (藤堂) literally means "wisteria hall." Wisteria is also Kora's official flower. Map
  • Kora Shrine 甲良神社 - Believed to have been established in the early 17th century, Kora Shrine is an Important Cultural Property in the Amago area. Map
  • Statue and museum of Kora Bungo-no-Kami Munehiro 甲良豊後守宗廣 - Next to Kora City Hall at a busy intersection sits a statue of Kora Bungo-no-Kami Munehiro (1574-1646). Born in Kora, he started a famous lineage of shrine/temple carpenters. He supervised the construction of many famous buildings. In 1604 at age 30, the Tokugawa government called him to Edo to supervise the building of Zojoji temple (where many Tokugawa shoguns are buried). He also supervised the building of the famous Toshogu Shrine in Nikko. A short walk from the statue is a small museum dedicated to him. Map

Event Calendar

  • July - Kora-cho Summer Festival 甲良町夏まつり - A day of stage entertainment and some fireworks at night. Held at the Kora Town Hall parking lot. Map
  • Nov. to early Dec. - Fall colors at Saimyoji temple. Shuttle buses run from Amago Station to the temple and the other two Koto Sanzan temples. Map
  • Every decade - Takatora Summit in Kora. Since 1998, the Takatora Summit has been held once every two years in one of four places (Kora, Tsu and Iga both in Mie, and Imabari in Ehime) having a close connection with Lord Todo Takatora. Kora's Zaiji area in Shiga is where Takatora was born. He went on to become lord of Tsu. In 2010, it was Kora's turn to host the Takatora Summit, for the second time. The one-day event was filled with stage entertainment, street vendors, a samurai procession, and more.

Travel Tips

Getting There

By Train

Kora has only one train station, Amago Station on the Ohmi Railways Main Line. However, Kawase Station on the JR Biwako Line in neighboring Hikone is near the fringe of the town. Buses run from Kawase Station to Kora, but very few.

Train Lines & Stations

Travel Time

By Bus

Taxis are available at Kawase Station, but not at Amago Station.

Nearest Airports

Getting Around

By train

Train stations in Kora and their places of interest are as follows:

  • Amago Station - Within walking distance are Kora Shrine in the Amago area, and Hachiman Shrine and Takatora Park in Zaiji.

By bus

  • Buses run from JR Kawase Station and Amago Station, but very few. An exception is during mid-Nov. to early Dec. when shuttle buses often run to Saimyoji temple. Call Ohmi Bus at 0749-25-2503 for exact bus schedules.

By bicycle

Maps

Google Map placemarks have English text.


View Kora, Shiga Prefecture in a larger map

Photos

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Flowery stream Saimyoji in fall

More photos at Kora Photos. More Shiga photos here.

Videos

Click on the video image to start playing the video. More Shiga videos here.

History

  • 1955 - Kora town established.
  • 1961 - Meishin Expressway and Tokaido Shinkansen tracks opens in Kora.
  • 1969 - Kora Town Hall building constructed.
  • 2000 - Takatora Summit in Kora is held for the first time.
  • 2003 - Community House at Amago Station is completed.
  • 2007 - 450th anniversary of Todo Takatora's birth celebrated.
  • 2010 - Takatora Summit in Kora is held for the second time.

Miscellaneous

Recent Kora News and Weather

The latest five headlines for Kora from Shiga News are displayed below. Click to view the latest stories.

Shiga News - Kora

↑ Grab this Headline Animator


More Kora news here.

Trivia

  • When the wisteria at Hachiman Shrine blooms in early May, a bunch is offered to the current head of the Todo family.

Famous People

Kora Bungo-no-Kami Munehiro (1574-1646)
Born in Kora, he started a famous lineage of shrine/temple carpenters. He supervised the construction of many famous buildings. In 1604 at age 30, the Tokugawa government called him to Edo to supervise the building of Zojoji temple (where many Tokugawa shoguns are buried). He also supervised the building of the famous Toshogu Shrine in Nikko. The reason why Kora has sister-city ties with Nikko.

Side Trips

Other sights in neighboring cities/towns within easy reach from Kora.

  • Kongorinji temple in Aisho is another temple of the Koto Sanzan Temple Trio.

Related Articles

External Links

Municipalities of Shiga Prefecture 滋賀県
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