All Shrines

Japanese Shrines  

Japanese Shrines are sacred buildings of the Shinto religion, an indigenous religion to Japan. The primary objective of a Shinto Shrine is to store and protect sacred objects, kami. These objects are said to be enshrined. Most Shinto Shrines feature a honden, the primary building where the sacred objects, kami are stored. An exception to this is where the sacred object is a mountain or similarly large object. Some shrines contain halls for worship, known as haiden.

Shinto Shrines are sometimes located near Japanese Temples, which share some common history.

There are estimated to be 100,000 Shinto Shrines throughout Japan, however some of these are small or miniature shrines, hokora, which are located along pathways or roads. There are some very old Japanese Shrines which were established over 1,200 years ago. Today some of these very old wooden shrines still survive, however many have been destroyed by lightning, fire, earthquakes, storms or war and have been rebuilt over the years. Many of these rebuilt shrine buildings are hundreds of years old.

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    Fushimi Inari Taisha Shrine

    Fushimi Inari Taisha Shrine has been made famous in modern culture through countless photographs and movies, including Memoirs of a Geisha, that depict the thousands of photogenic vermilion torii lining the stone paths throughout the extensive shrine grounds. Only a short walk along the stone path lined with the Vermilion read more

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    Meiji Jingu Shrine

    Meiji Jingu Shrine (明治神宮) is one of the most popular shrines in Tokyo and is a must see for anyone visiting Tokyo. Not only is this shrine easy to access via train to Harajuku Station, it is also right next to the very popular and fashionable Harajuku. This makes it easy read more

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    Atsuta Shrine

    Atsuta Shrine (Atsuta Jingu) is thought to be the second most important shrine in Japan, second only to Ise Jingo (Ise Shrine). Atsuta Shrine is very popular, attracting over 9 million visitors annually. Atsuta Shrine was originally founded in 113AD, when the sacred sword Kusanagi-no-tsurugi, one of the Imperial symbols, was read more

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    Osaka Tenmangu Shrine

    Osaka Tenmangu Shrine hosts Osaka’s biggest festival Tenjin Matsuri, which is one of the greatest boat festivals in the world. Osaka Tenmangu Shrine was established in 949AD under order of Emperor Murakami to enshrine the Sugawara no Michizane. The current buildings of Osaka Tenmangu Shrine date back to 1845, with read more

  • Yasaka Shrine

    Yasaka Shrine is a Shinto Shrine in Ikeda Osaka. Yasaka Shrine was established in 978AD and rebuilt in 1610. Yasaka Shrine is a designated Important Cultural Property.

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    Haritsuna Shrine

    Haritsuna Shrine held a festival in 1635, which has now become the famous, and National Significant Intangible Gold Cultural Asset called the Inuyama Festival. Today the Inuyama Festival features 13 three layer floats which are close to 8m high and at night time each features 365 Japanese lanterns. Haritsuna Shrine, read more

  • Katori Shrine

    Katori Shrine in Katori in Chiba Prefecture is the ichinomiya (highest ranking or head shrine) of the 400 Katori Shrines throughout Japan. Katori Shrine, said to have been established in 642BC, enshrines Futsunushi (swords and lightning). The Honden and Romon gate of Katori Shrine where both built in 1700 and read more

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    Kushida Shrine

    Kushida Shrine is a grand tutelary shrine, widely known as Okushida-san, in Hakata (Fukuoka). Kushida Shrine dates back to 757, when Emperor Koken reigned and Tairano Kiyomori designated Hakata Port as a base of Japan-China trade. Kushida Shrine was built on the Emperor’s order to share a god with Kushida read more