The official name of the temple is Rengeo-in or Hall of the Lotus King. It was built in 1164. The original temple building was lost in fire, but was reconstructed in 1266. The long temple hall, which is about 120 meters long, is made in the Wayo style architecture. As there are 33 spaces between the columns, this temple came to be called "Sanjusangen-do" (a hall with 33 spaces between the columns).
The principal images of Sanjusangen-do temple are the 1001 statues of the Buddhist deity Kannon. 1000 standing statues of Kannon and one gigantic seated statues, placed at the center of the standing statues are housed in the temple hall. The statues are made of Japanese cypress.
The 28 images placed in a straight line in front of the 1001 Kannon statues are guardian deities. Many of them have their origin in ancient India. There are also two famous statues of Thunder God and Wind God.