Have you ever heard of Chuson-ji Temple and its Konjikido Golden Hall? This site was designated as a World Heritage Site by UNESCO in June 2011. Out of the many structures and altars within the temple, Konjikido is especially ornate-designed, made as a Buddhist structure that represents the Buddhist Pure Land on earth with the craftsmanship techniques of the time. Many tourists from around the world visit every year to gaze at the splendor of this golden altar.

The man who built this treasure of Iwate and now World Heritage Site was named Fujiwara no Kiyohira, the first lord of the Oshu Fujiwara clan. The Oshu Fujiwara clan achieved hegemony of the Tohoku region (then called “Mutsu Dewa”) in the late Heian period.

Kiyohira’s father, Tsunekiyo, lived in the area that is now known as Esashi of Oshu City, Iwate. In that area today is a theme park of sorts related to the Oshu Fujiwara clan that I’d like to talk about today – the Historical Park Esashi Fujiwara no Sato (“The Hometown of the Fujiwara Clan in Esashi”), which is celebrating its 30th anniversary of its opening this year!

Esashi Fujiwara no Sato opened in the Esashi area of Oshu City in 1993 as a historical theme park. It was also the backdrop for the filming of a famous period piece called “Homura Tatsu” that showcased the rise and fall of the Oshu Fujiwara clan. Within the park’s 20 hectares are around 120 buildings, large and small. Among them are the “Kyara no Gosho,” a recreation of the palatial buildings where nobles lived in the Heian period, the “Tsunekiyo Hall” and “Kiyohira Hall” reproductions of samurai halls, and “Seicho” reproduction of a government hall. The park is surrounded by beautiful nature, and you can enjoy the varied sights of the seasons such as cherry blossoms, wisteria, azalea, hydrangea, water lilies, bush clovers, and autumn leaves. Within the buildings, you’ll find areas where you can try on period clothes and samurai armor, try your hand at archery and more, making it a wonderful place to experience what it was like in the Heian period of Japan for kids and adults alike.

Visit Esashi Fujiwara no Sato for a thrilling trip back in time to the Heian period!

Address/Contact Information
Address: (023-1101) Iwate-ken, Oshu-shi, Esashi, Iwayado, Aza Konamaru 86-1
Address (Japanese): 〒023-1101 岩手県奥州市江刺岩谷堂字小名丸86-1
TEL: 0197-35-7791/FAX: 0197-35-7978

Every fall, the park sets up lights to illuminate the fall colors at night – this season’s lights will run from October 20 to November 12 (only on Fridays, Saturdays, and Sundays).



Fall Colors Illumination Event 2023
〇Dates:   10/20・21・22・27・28・29
11/3・4・5・10・11・12 ※Only on Fridays, Saturdays, and Sundays
〇Admission: General→High school and older 800 yen, Middle and
elementary school 400 yen
Oshu City residents→High school and older 500 yen, Middle and
elementary school 300 yen (must show proof of residency)                                  ※Admission free for children younger than elementary school



Within the park, the spectacular view of autumn leaves illuminated by light stretches before your eyes! You also can’t miss the reflection of autumn leaves in the pond by Kyara no Gosho. On nights of the illumination, the restaurant has special operating hours, and there are even food stalls set up within the village area of the park, so you’ll be able to eat awesome food that you can only get at Esashi Fujiwara no Sato. You should also try the “Autumn Leaves Set (Momiji Gozen)” plate at the restaurant, of which they limit to only 10 orders a day.

At the same time, the park is running a special new projection lights show and has also opened a new spot in 2023, illuminating the bamboo forest! There is also a photo contest running on Instagram during the autumn leaves illumination, and winners will get a special item as a prize.

The author visited the autumn leaves light up last year, and the gorgeous views and performances really left an impression. This year is the 30th anniversary of the park’s opening, so the light show has really powered up! Plus, don’t forget to check out famed director Kitano Takeshi’s newest movie due out this year on November 23 – you’ll spot some locations filmed at Esashi Fujiwara no Sato!

This is the best time to visit the park – I hope you all get to visit Esashi Fujiwara no Sato and see the fantastic autumn views.







〒023-1101 岩手県奥州市江刺岩谷堂字小名丸86-1

       11/3・4・5・10・11・12 ※金土日開催です。
〇料金 :一般   高校生以上800円 小中学400円
       奥州市民 高校生以上500円 小中学生300円(奥州市民である証明書提示による)