Kaua’i Soto Zen Temple

Soto Zen Temple

The Kaua’i Soto Zen Temple is a Zen buddhist temple, one of the first two that was established in Hawaii and the Americas (United States) in 1903.

The temple stands majestically along the main highway in Hanapepe town, known for its beautiful, authentic roofline, detailed, ornamental motifs on its pillars and beams, and walls of shoji doors. The World Kannon Peace Statue, dedicated to world peace, stand alongside the temple.

The official Japanese name of the temple is Kokeizan Zenshuji or simply, Zenshuji.  Kokeizan means “Mountain of the Grand Canyon,” referring to the spectacular Waimea Canyon in the Koke’e region of the island, an area of great natural beauty. Kokei was chosen because of its similar sound to the Hawaiian placename of Koke’e.  Zenshuji means “Temple of the Essence of Zen,” or simply “Temple of Zen.