Gotokuji Temple, Setagaya-ku, Japan 

Gotokuji Temple, located in the Setagaya ward of Tokyo, is a Buddhist temple that is said to be the birthplace of the maneki-neko, or “luck-inviting cat figurine.” These small statues, which portray a cat sitting up and beckoning with its front paw, have become quite popular all over the world with cat-lovers. Although there are many different kinds of maneki-neko raising either their right or left paws, Gotokuji Temple specializes in the right-pawed version of this good-luck symbol.

Epic Japan Culture & Adventure Route © Monika Newbound

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