World of Pokémon Day #19 – Lavender Town/Narita – The Shinsoji Temple

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If there’s anywhere in Kanto you might feel a little apprehensive about staying the night, it’s Lavender Town. The place is well known to be haunted by ghosts and not just Ghost Type Pokémon either but genuine spirits back from the dead. It’s home to a massive grave sight where Channellers are possessed by these malevolent beings. It’s downright spooky.
That is it used to be, but by the time Pokémon Gold and Silver can around the graveyard had been converted into a Radio Broadcasting Tower and as such is a much more lively place to be. So where does Narita stand in this state of affairs?
Well ultimately Narita’s main claim to fame is the international airport on the outskirts of the city, the very same airport we flew into almost three weeks ago. Unless Lavender Town has such a complex hidden in the mountains it is nestled between, there’s nothing that quite matches this aspect of the city. As such many people from all over the world stay here whether they have a long wait between connecting flights or are simply wanting somewhere to spend the night beforehand. But that’s not to say something here doesn’t remind us of old Lavender Town.
The Shinsoji Temple lies about a 20 minute walk from the train station down a shopping lined avenue. It is Narita’s most popular landmark and unlike many of the other temples we’ve seen thus far. It lies within a large park with multiple pagodas dotted about some of which date back to over 1000 years ago. But it isn’t simply the impressive shrines that remind us of Lavender Town. It’s a peaceful place with many memorials of the departed around. It is perhaps the grandeur and age of this shrine that reminds us of the Pokémon Tower that was once the biggest landmark in Lavender Town. It’s a little more pleasant though considering there’s none of that creepy music playing in the background.
Ultimately Narita is quite a small place with the temple providing the only real point of interest, but it remains a rather impressive temple and seems reasonably fitting as the counterpart of Lavender Town as such.

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