Usually, when you talk about rare temples, you most likely refer to Japan. In this case, the Byodo-In Temple is actually a non-denominational temple that has the Japanese style, but which was created in 1968 as a way to commemorate an anniversary of the first Japanese immigrants that came to Hawaii.
So yes, this is not exactly a very old temple, but it is a replica of the Byodoin Temple of Uji in Kyoto. This was established back in 1052, and it had a massive historical significance at that particular time.
You can find the Byodo-In Temple at around 2000 feet in the Ko’Olau Mountains in the Valley of the Temples. What makes it stand out is that it was actually used in LOST, one very popular TV series. At the same time, you shouldn’t expect the Byodo-In Temple to be a functioning temple, as that is not the case here. It doesn’t have a resident community here.
But it does have a statue of Lotus Buddha, an image with Amitabha so as a whole it does have quite a massive historical significance. The temple also has lacquer and gold coverage and you will find a very large brass bell.
In order to bring in that Japanese appeal, the Byodo-In Temple is surrounded by large koi ponds that cover around 2 acres in total. While it’s mostly a tourist destination, this is also a symbol that the Hawaiian community created in order to appreciate people from Japan that came here. It’s extremely important to note that people of all faiths can come here, since this is not really a functioning temple. If anything, it’s a tourist location and it should be treated by one.
You can use it as a worshiping place, but the Byodo-In Temple can also be used for office meetings and weddings. The temple was actually created out of concrete and it was particularly focused on being very similar to the temple that has the same name, yet which existed many years ago. Ferdinand Marco’s remains were here, but since then they were moved to another place and the Byodo-In Temple is not a location that you can visit and enjoy with your friends and family if you so desire.
While it was featured on many TV shows, the Byodo-In Temple continues to be one of the nicest and coolest places that you can explore in Hawaii. Being able to have the Japanese culture so close to you does make a whole lot of sense, and you definitely have to keep that in mind as it’s really special.
Overall, the Byodo-In Temple is one of the most interesting temples that you can find in Hawaii. Sure, it was created out of respect for the Japanese people, but it looks amazing and it’s very well done. Plus, the authorities are preserving it very well too, which does bring in front some astonishing benefits on its own too. So yes, you should consider visiting this location, as you will be more than impressed with it.