Motsuji ("Moutsuuji" in Japanese sound) is a Buddhist temple in Hiraizumi town, and is located about 2 km south of Chusonji temple.
It is a temple of the Tendai sect like Chusonji temple.
Originally, it was built by Priest En'nin in 850. But it suffered from a massive fire then had been burnt down.
In the 1150s, Motohira Fujiwara, the second lord of Fujiwara clan, built the great temple on this place. It is said that the scale was larger than Chusonji temple.
However, unfortunately, it suffered from a fire in 1226 and 1573, then this place had been a ruin for a long time.
Since 1954, the ruin was excavated and researched, then the whole picture of the original temple was clarified.
In the center of this site, there is a big pond "Ooizumi-ga-ike".
Including this pond, a Japanese garden is spread. It is named "Jodo-teien", and means "a garden like Pure Land where Buddha is living".
And around Jodo-teien, several remains of former buildings are dotted.
On a side of this site, there are a current main temple built in 1989 and a treasure museum.
Many festivals are held in this temple.
"Fujiwara Festival in spring" is famous for the parade between Motsuji and Chusonji.
"Gokusui-no-en" is a graceful festival, and is held on the 4th Sunday
Some poets wearing Japanese ancient dresses sit by a stream in Jodo-Teien.
A cup of sake are floated on the stream, then each poet composes a short poem before the cup reaches the poet.
If he/she cannot compose a poem, he/she must drink the sake as a penalty !
Motsuji was registered as a World Heritage Site "Hiraizumi" in 2011.
Get off at Hiraizumi-Maesawa Exit on Tohoku Expressway. From there, about 5 km.