Konpon Daitō

Buddhist Temple in Kōya-san

Image by Veerachart Shutterstock

Most recently rebuilt in 1934 after a fire, this 50m tall, bright-orange pagoda in the Garan is said to be the centre of the lotus-flower mandala formed by Kōya-san's eight mountains. The main object of worship is Dainichi-nyōrai (Cosmic Buddha) and his four attendant Buddhas, painted on pillars, said to combine to form a single mandala. Originally, it's said, the pillars were painted by Kōbō Daishi himself. Even though it's since been repainted, it's an awesome sight.