Byodo-In Temple

Byodo-In Temple
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Phone (808) 239-8811
Address 47-200 Kahekili Highway, Kaneohe, HI 96744
It's a replica of a building in Japan in an uber peaceful setting.

• General: Cost: Paid • General: Educational • General: Photo Opportunity • Sightseeing: Great Views • Cultural & Historical: Heiau / Sacred Site

The Byodo-In Temple is a replica of the real thing located in Japan which is over 950 years old. The O'ahu version, located in Kaneohe, isn't nearly as old as it was built in 1968 and celebrating 50 years as of 2018. It's also much smaller. In fact, it's quite small and doesn't really offer much in the way of things to do here. Fun fact: The word "Byodo" means "equal" while "In" means "temple" so Byodo-In means Temple of Equality.

It's a non-practicing temple but you're free to ring the big gong thing they have (they call it Bon-sho which they say means Sacred Bell) and/or enjoy the temple building (pray, meditate, snap a picture with the 9 foot tall Amida Buddha, whatever floats your boat). Well, free will actually cost you $3 per person ($2 for senior citizens, $1 for kids). This is Hawaii people, free is rarely actually free! Of course, if you want truly free things to do then be sure to read Free Things To Do In Hawaii.

While there is very little to actually do here, this in the Valley of the Temples Memorial Park and cemetery after all) it's still pretty neat to see and you'll find great photo opportunities throughout the property. They have some cool bridges, a Zen garden, a meditation pavilion, a Shinji-like reflection pond with Japanese koi, and a little gift shop (again, this is Hawaii and we'll add a gift shop in places you couldn't dream of!).

If you'd like to make this area your eternal resting place then you're in luck as you can make that happen at Valley of the Temples Memorial Park.

We've seen people really get into this place but it's probably not super exciting for most. If it looks familiar it's probably because you've see it in the TV shows Lost, Fantasy Island Remake, Karate Kid, Pearl Harbor, Hawaii Five-O or (if you're old school) Magnum P.I. For more on that, be sure to read Popular Movies & TV Shows Filmed In Hawaii.

We're not trying to be harsh on this place at all, just trying to set your expectations accordingly. There are a lot of people that really enjoy this place but it's not for everyone and if you have kids they'll enjoy the gong and feeding the fish but will get bored fairly fast after that. It's very good for what it's trying to be, but it's not trying to be some major attraction.