Tokyo is a diverse city, on one hand you have the neon signs and sky scrapper buildings and then on the other hand there is an amazing amount of historic places to visit.
The more I research, the more beautiful shrines I find and can’t wait to visit on my return to Tokyo.
For now, here are the three shrines I have visited in Tokyo.
Meiji Jingu Shrine
An easy one to tick off the list and by far the most popular is Meiji Jingu. You may have seen photos of the sake barrels, which are a decorative display giving honour to the gods.
Meiji Shrine is located just steps away from Harajuku Station on the JR Yamanote line or Meji-jingu-mae station on the Chiyoda and Fukutoshin subway lines.
You can’t miss the entrance as it is marked with a huge torii gate. After entering, the hustle and bustle of the quickly fades away as you walk through a forest of around 100,000 trees. These were all donated from across the country during the construction of this shrine which is dedicated to Emperor Meiji and his wife, Empress Shōken
Whether you want to visit the shrine or not, this area makes for a beautiful spot for a stroll with its many walking paths.
Fushimi Inari Temple in Kyoto may be famous for its torii gates, but Nezu Shrine and Hie shrine in Tokyo are great alternatives if you’re unable to get there.
One of the oldest shrines in Japan, Nezu shrine is worth the visit. A lot of the Tokyo we know today has been rebuilt after the 1945 air raids that destroyed a large portion of the city. Nezu shrine is one of the few places that were left intact.
The torii gate tunnel and the viewing platform are the highlight of Nezu shrine as the torii gates are nestled among lush greenery making your visit an incredibly peaceful and calming experience.
Nezu Shrine isn’t as popular as Meiji Jingu so you can expect for a much quieter experience, which is a nice break from the Tokyo’s crazy cowds. We arrived just before sunset and even though this cut our visit short, we were the only ones there. For attractions in Tokyo or anywhere really, I always suggest an early or late visit to avoid crowds.
The torii gates are short here so expect to be crouching down as you walk through them, which makes for a fun photo.
There are three entrances to this shrine, and I happened to come through the back entrance with the large black shrine gate. For me, this made for an exciting start as I walked up the stairs through the tunnel of bright red torii gates, which after all, was the reason I was visiting this shrine.
If you come through the main entry you will walk up stairs to the main shrine area, which is where I visited after the torii gates.
I hear there are over 4000 shrines in Tokyo. Have you visited any that I should see next time I’m in Tokyo?