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the trail of shrine gates up mount inari

Kyoto Travel Blog

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the first shrine gate of fushimi inari shrine

It's a Thursday, what a day to have off, my wife is at work, my son is a t kindergarten, my friends are also working, what am I going to do. Wait a minute, a thought just came to my head everyone is at work why don't I visit a shrine. I had always wanted to go to Fushimi Inari shrine, so this was a great opportunity to see a sight without the Japanese tourists.

I took the train and when I exited through the wickets I could see the huge tori gate(shrine gate)of Fushimi Inari shrines. The gate is huge but this is not the only gate there are literally thousands of red gates leading up to the top of Mount Inari. Before going to the shrine and hiking the mountain I bought a big bottle of water so I could have plenty to drink for the four kilometre hike.

The main shrine is only a couple of hundred metres from the first shrine gate but the entire complex consists of five shrines, which is sprawled across Mount Inari.

fushimi inari shrine
Fushimi Inari shrine was dedicated to the gods of rice and sake by the Hata family in the 8th century, as the role ofagriculture diminished, deities were enrolled to ensure prosperity in business.Fushimi Inari is the head shrine 30,000 Inari shrines spread out over Japan.

At the main shrine I watched as a buddist priest was performing sutra for a group of people, no photos were allowed to be taken and 3 elderly women were playing a traditional instrument I think I was witnessing a Japanese funeral but not 100% sure even though I couldN't take photos I stood and watched for about 20 minutes to experience Japanese culture.

Once looking at the main shrine, it was then time to climb the mount Inari and see the other 4 shrines that make up the complex from here you have to follow the trail up the mountain, the trail is completely covered by hundreds maybe even thousands of shrine gates.

eenie, meenie, minnie mo which gates do i go
  After walking for awhile it comes to a trail with a fork in it here there are actually two lots of shrine gates leading to the same place at that time I did not know so I contemplated which one to take after choosing I saw that they kept going next to each other don't know why it split up for a short section, here I came to the next shrine. I met up with another Australian and he told me where there is like a hidden trail that runs through a bamboo forrest so naturally I had to check that out. He was a nice guy only problem is he's from Sydney haha I'm from Melbourne so there's a bit of a rivalry there.

I followed his direction, went through the small cemetry, around the back of the pond, here I took a photo and has I turned my back I heard two big splashes I nearly shat my pants it gave me that much of a fright.

more gates
I looked into the water and saw two big fish, they must of made the noise. I kept following the small trail until it came out into a bamboo forrest, talk about beautiful, I wandered slowly through the forrest when someone from behind said excuse me in Japanese, come on I knew I was walking slowly but I just got passed by an old Japanese lady who looked like she was in her 80's. The trail came back to the shrine that I was at before so I walked briskly up the mountain back to where the pond was. I was now getting closer to the top as it started to get a little steep, the legs started to tire so I stopped to rest in a restraunt to have kitsune udon.yes even on top of mountains there are restraunts in Japan.

After taking a rest, I climbed the remainder of the mountain to look at the view of Kyoto, from the top I could see the first shrine gate of Inari shrine, 4 kilometres below. Fushimi inari shrine has now became my favourite shrine. I reccomend you all to come here if you come to Kyoto

 

dariopaquit says:
i been there twice. one of my favorite spot in kyoto specially the wooden enter way with kanji character!!love it this blog man!!!
Posted on: Sep 11, 2013
genex13 says:
I was there and it was great. Especially the one monk, showing me in broken english some things and explaining it.
Posted on: Dec 07, 2008
Aquedita says:
Definately one of my favourite places in Kyoto area, a must when you're here and I recomend it to everyone :)
Posted on: Jul 23, 2008
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the first shrine gate of fushimi i…
the first shrine gate of fushimi …
fushimi inari shrine
fushimi inari shrine
eenie, meenie, minnie mo which gat…
eenie, meenie, minnie mo which ga…
more gates
more gates
hundreds of shrine gates going up …
hundreds of shrine gates going up…
bamboo forrest
bamboo forrest
japanese tree
japanese tree
forrest of mount inari
forrest of mount inari
fushimi inari shrine
fushimi inari shrine
a smaller shrine at the complex
a smaller shrine at the complex
peoples wishes
people's wishes
2nd shrine gate
2nd shrine gate
fox
fox
mount inari
mount inari
trail of shrine gates
trail of shrine gates
bamboo forrest
bamboo forrest
bamboo forrest
bamboo forrest
bamboo forrest
bamboo forrest
the pathway up the mountain
the pathway up the mountain
the trail
the trail
from top of mount inari you can se…
from top of mount inari you can s…
water purifier
water purifier
leading off to a hidden trail
leading off to a hidden trail
Kyoto
photo by: ys484