Fushimi Inari Taisha, Fushimi-ku, Kyoto, Japan. The most important Shinto shrine of Inari – a Japanese spirit of foxes, rice, tea and Sake – is definitely one of the most beautiful as well. Posited on the tall Inariyama hill, the shrine is overlooking the city. A four kilometer path leads to the temple, providing a meditative walk and sites of smaller shrines as well as nature.
It was built here in the 8th-9th centuries. The most recognizable thing about the temple is torii – a path with hundreds of gates lined up one after another. It connects the main shrine with the inner shrine. There are also many sculptures, fountains and altars dedicated to the fox (kitsune) – a wise messenger, possessing magical powers.
Why to go there?
Visit this historic shrine once in Kyoto. The nice hike, architecture, natural environment and tranquil atmosphere will definitely provide an exhilarating spiritual experience.
When to go there?
All year round. It is very busy during the Japanese New Year that take place from January 1 to 4 – up to a few million people visit Fushimi Inari Taisha during this time.
How to get there?
It is easily accessible – only 5 minutes drive from Kyoto Station and then walk up the hill.
Lead photo by David Kosmos Smith