Meiji Jingu

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1-1 Yoyogi-Kamizono-cho, Tokyo, Japan

Meiji Jingu Tokyo Reviews

pretty_girl pretty_g…
196 reviews
picturesque Japanese Shinto shrine Mar 27, 2015
Meiji-jingu is open sunrise to sunset. Admission is free. Take the JR Yamanote line to Harajuku station.

The entire complex is enormous, covering 175 acres that can be both extremely busy and crowded in one area while being extremely peaceful and serene at the same time in another. Even just walking into it can be an experience because outside, due to the traffic and local area it can be quite noisy, but once go under that first torii( shrine gate) you enter a forest that blocks everything out. The shrine is a very beautiful place, especially with its iconic Japanese roofs. Any visit to Tokyo needs to have this shrine on its itinerary.

Dedicated to the late 19th-century emperor who opened Japan to the West, Tokyo's most famous Shinto shrine is wonderfully serene and austere, not colorful or flashy like other Asian places of worship, and is less of a tourist trap than Senso-ji, the big Buddhist temple across town in Asakusa. Stop at the cleansing station where you can dip into a communal water tank and purify your hands and mouth before offering up a prayer. You can write wishes on little pieces of paper and tie them onto the prayer wall, or do as the locals do — toss some yen into the offering box (it's near the enormous taiko drum), bow your head twice, clap twice, and bow once more.

Meiji Jingu is one of the best places to see a Shinto wedding procession. They are very colourful and take place in front of the main building, usually on weekends. You won’t be able to see an actual wedding ceremony itself, but the processions are very impressive. They are quite solemn, led by the priests and miko (women or girls who assist in the ceremonies), and the bride and groom who walk under a large red parasol.
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Toonsarah Toonsarah
566 reviews
A sacred shrine Oct 06, 2013
The Shinto shrine Meiji Jingu is dedicated to the deified spirits of Emperor Meiji and his wife, Empress Shōken. It was originally built between 1915 and 1921 but was destroyed in the Tokyo air raids of World War Two, so what we see today is the 1950s reconstruction.

Emperor Meiji was born in 1852 and ascended to the throne in 1867 as the first emperor of modern Japan. His accession brought an end to the feudal shogun era and ushered in a period known as the Meiji Restoration, during which Japan modernised and westernised herself to join the world's major powers. This shrine celebrates that achievement so is a significant place in the country’s history and sense of itself.

The shrine is located in Yoyogi Park and is surrounded by an evergreen forest that consists of 120,000 trees of 365 different species, by people from all over the country. We strolled through these trees along wide paths, following the crowds of both Japanese visitors and tourists. The first thing we saw was a large number of sake barrels displayed by the side of the path. These are offered every year by sake brewers from around the country to show their respect for the souls of the Emperor and Empress in recognition of the encouragement given to the growth of this and other industries under the Meiji Restoration.

Near here is the first of several torii or shrine gates. This one is the biggest of its style (known as Myojin) in the country – 12 metres high with a 17 metre cross piece spanning its 1.2 metre wide pillars. It was made from 1,500 year old Japanese cypress or hinoki in 1970 and is an exact replica of the 1920 original.

Passing beneath this the path continues to the main shrine which you enter beneath another torii. Just before this on the left is the temizuya or font where the faithful purify themselves before entering the shrine. Once inside you find yourself in a large courtyard surrounded by several buildings and with the shrine itself in front of you. People mill about, and as always at a Shinto shrine you will see a lot of amulets for sale and prayer plaques, known as ema, on which people write prayers and wishes before leaving them hanging for the spirits to read. Around two sides of this courtyard we saw hundreds of dolls and soft toys lined up in rows, with more being added even as we looked. I wasn’t sure whether these are given in gratitude for prayers answered or as offerings to ensure a positive response to entreaties.

Perhaps because it was a Sunday, we were lucky enough to see several weddings in progress while we were here, and no one seemed to mind us watching and taking photos.

The shrine is open all day every day and is free to visit. The treasure house, where you can see personal belongings of the Emperor and Empress, including the carriage which the emperor rode to the formal declaration of the Meiji Constitution in 1889, costs 500¥ (2013 prices) and is open 9.00-16.30, but we didn’t go have time to visit this.
Sake barrels, Meiji Jingu
Visitors at the first torii, Meiji…
First torii, Meiji Jingu
First torii, Meiji Jingu
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Toonsarah says:
It is, and lots to see
Posted on: Jan 15, 2018
odiseya says:
Interesting place!
Posted on: Jan 15, 2018

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