Hachioji Shrine in the middle of nowhere in Mizunami in Gifu Prefecture claims to have the largest komainu statues in Japan, confirmed by the Guinness Book of Records.
Komainu are the pair of guardians seen at the entrance to many Japanese shrines. The komainu at Hachioji Shrine are 3.3m tall, 1.56m wide and 2.4m in depth. The combined weight of the two komainu is 15 tons.
The nearby area which includes Mino and further to the south Seto in Aichi prefecture is well-known for its ceramics. The komainu at Hachioji Shrine were made in a kiln in Mino. Over 1,000 people were involved in their production which took 183 days!
Mizunami also holds the record for producing the world's largest teapot also acknowledged by Guinness.
Hachioji Shrine is on route 363 which leads to Ena city from Seto and Nagoya.
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