Most of all the souvenir shops will put a cat ornament with a paw raised at door. As you know that this is the popular mascot called lucky cat. And Gotokuji, located in the Setagaya Tokyo, is regarded as the birthplace of Lucky Cat. Thousands of lucky cats sit in the temple. It is the best place to those who love cats.
Start from Gotokuji Station
If you take the Odakyu line from shinjuku, you will get to Gotokuji station in 15 minutes. And Gotokuji is less than 15 minutes away from the station by foot.
On the way to Gotokuji, I passed many interesting stores where the local people usually shop.
Follow the marks on the road , you will get to Gotokuji easily.
As seen, on the opposite of the three-storied pagoda is the Maneki Neko Hall which is used to sacrifice the lucky cats.
History of Gotokuji
The story of the lucky cat is said that at the Edo period, the lord of the Hikone was getting home from hunting hawk. When He walked by Gotokuji, he noticed a cat inside the temple beckoning to him.
He decided to follow the cat to take a break in this temple. As soon as he approached the cat, there was a sudden big thunderstorm. Due to the cat, the lord finally escaped from that terrible thunderstorm. He felt so lucky to be saved by that cat. Therefore, the lord sponsored the obsolete temple to renew and sacrificed his ancestors in this temple. Goutokoji thrived from that on.
Find out the secret of lucky cats
You must want to know why there are so many lucky cats in Gotokuji? The fact is that the worshipers sacrifice them here. Worshipers give the lucky cats back to Gotokuji after the wishes coming true.
Because the lucky cats are sacrificed in January and February, you will see numberless lucky cats if you come here in January and February.
“Ema” is a common thing in the Japanese Temple. You can write down your dreams and prays on the Ema. By the way , all the Ema there have lucky cats on them.
There is a lovely lucky cat outside the main hall and reception desk in the hall. Besides lucky cats, you can buy Omamori and Ema here.
What you do not know about the lucky cats
At last, let me share the knowledge about the Lucky Cat:
Left or right paw up: Left paw raised means to beckon customers and right paw raised means to beckon money
The color of the lucky cat:
-White cat is to beckon happiness
-Black cat is to ward off evil and stalkers
-Golden cat is for wealth and prosperity
-Blue cat is for educations and traffic safety
Address: 2-24-7, Gotokuji, Setagaya-ku, Tokyo
Admission Fee: Free
For more inforamtion → http://www.odakyu.jp/english/traffic/