As part of the Cultural Activities for Students at NAIST, 30 tour participants (25 international students, 2 Japanese students and 3 staff members) visited Todaiji Temple, Kasuga Taisha Shrine and the Nara National Museum on October 14th, 2019. This tour was held to give students an opportunity to broaden their knowledge of Japanese history and culture, especially in the Nara area. Participants were welcomed by many deer around Nara Park, and the tour began in a relaxing atmosphere.
The tour first visited Daibutsu-den at Todaiji Temple, where the students were overwhelmed by the large Buddha statue many times their own size. Following this, the group toured Kasuga Taisha Shrine, which is in the primitive forest of Mt. Kasuga, and the students seemed to feel the mystery of history at the brilliant vermillion shrine founded 1300 years ago. Finally, at the Nara National Museum, the students viewed about 100 Buddhist statues including national treasures, important cultural assets ranging from the Asuka to the Kamakura period, and felt the appeal of Buddhist statues in Nara.
The students enjoyed the day exploring Japanese culture and history in Nara and commented that "It was a good opportunity to deepen understanding of Japanese culture and history, especially in Nara." and that "I enjoyed learning about Japanese culture and history through visiting Nara Park"