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Todai-ji Temple and Butt-Biting Deer in Nara

While I did not enjoy getting my butt bit by a deer, it was an experience going to Nara. It was quite far from where we were staying in Kyoto so we made the decision to just visit the Todai-ji Temple and boy did we make a good choice. I had no idea just how harmoniously people could interact with nature, and it was amazing! Kudos to Japan for doing this, as it’s not the kind of thing I’ve ever seen in the U.K. especially when all of the deer were wild…

We started our journey on an extremely slow train where we were surrounded by a boisterous tourist group who could not stop talking. I was so thankful when we finally arrived in Nara, and we instantly hopped onto a bus to take us all the way to the top of the hill to Todai-ji Temple. It was amazing how everything had an English translation – I felt a bit guilty of that I only knew a handful of Japanese phrases that I learnt from anime – so if you don’t know a word of Japanese, you’ll be fine. We could tell we were in the right place as the number of deer got larger when we went further up, so we hopped off the bus and began our walk to the Todai-ji Temple.

Paying respects by lighting incense
The largest bronze buddha statue in the world
More buddha statues, one on each side of the large bronze one
Evolution of the Todai-ji Temple

Baby and mama deer!
Feeding some wild deer in Nara

The temple was huge. Part of it had been closed off for construction for the 2020 Olympics, but luckily the main part of it was left so that we could see the biggest bronze buddha statue in the world (aka a  Daibutsu). It was huge, and flanked by two smaller statues that were equally jaw-dropping. It took us a while to walk around and I had a quick glance at the evolution of the temple as other families queued for their children to crawl underneath even smaller statues for photos. We soon left after picking up some souvenirs and walked out to where the deer were watching us curiously.

Sooo you might be wondering why I included “butt-biting deer” at the title of this post? Well, we managed to buy some deer snacks for around 150YEN (around £1.50) and as soon as they picked up the scent they swarmed over. The packet I had was gulped down in seconds, and I felt a sharp nip on my butt when one curious deer tried to get my attention so that I could feed it. It worked, as I instantly turned around and it took the last piece of the cracker I had in my hand. It was so cute!

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If you’re visiting the Kansai region in Japan then Nara is a definite must – because where else will you get the chance to feed wild deer?

Until next Sunday!

Lizzie xx

P.S. I’d like to say a huge thank you to the absolute babe that is Wib for recommending Nara to me because I had such a good time!

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