Choanji Temple (·À, Chōanji) is a temple of the Soto school of Zen Buddhism in the Sengokuhara area of Hakone. Established in 1356 in a quiet area at the base of a hill, the atmospheric temple has a small network of pleasant walking trails which wind through its wooded grounds and cemetery.
What lends Choanji its particular charm, however, are the over two hundred statues of rakan (disciples of Buddha) scattered around the temple grounds. The statues began appearing in the 1980s and have been accruing ever since. Each statue has a unique face and shape, some contemplative and serious, others casual and humorous, and many show a modern edge in their artistic style and expressiveness compared to other collections of rakan statues.
Choanji Temple is located just a two minute walk from Sengoku (åÎ) bus stop, which is served by Hakone Tozan Buses and Odakyu Buses. The one way ride from Hakone-Yumoto takes about 25 minutes and cost 750 yen, while from Togendai it takes 10-15 minutes and costs 440 yen. Buses depart several times per hour and are covered by the Hakone Free Pass.