Sogenji KappaderaFree: All time

Sogenji Temple is a shrine dedicated to the Japanese mythical creature, Kappa. Some sort of water-goblin, with turtle and humanoid characteristic and the size of a child, Kappa has been in the country’s folklore from back in the days. Kappa supposedly inhabit ponds and rivers. While they’re usually seen a mischievous trickster, pulling relatively innocent pranks, Kappas are also blamed for drownings. Kappa’s favourite sport is wrestling. They are said to grab children crossing bridges to wrestle with, and in turn, drowning them. To appease these creatures, Sogenji / Kappa-dera Temple is built where offerings of their favourite food, cucumbers, are made. In this temple, find also preserved specimens of Kappa. For more Kappa-themed fun, take a walk through Kappabashi-dori to find images and statues along the way.

Address: 3 Chome-7-2 Matsugaya, Taito, Tokyo
Opening hours: Daily 9am – 5pm
Direction: Subway Ginza Line to Inaricho Station; Metro HIbiya Line to Iriya Station; Tsukuba Express to Asakusa Station
Phone: +81 3-3841-2035

Photo credit: On Mark Productions, Atlas Obscura