Must-see shinto shrines 一度は行きたい神社

The torii at Oarai shrine

Unique shrines

Recognisable by their red torii gates, Shinto shrines are an integral part of the local landscape in Japan. Many Japanese visit them all year long to seek protection from the deities, and today there are more than 100,000 shrines throughout the country. Here are four of them that caught our attention - whether for their interesting location or their unique architecture, these shrines are definitely worth a visit.


2. Oarai shrine (Ibaraki)

Located in Oarai in Ibaraki prefecture, Oarai shrine is a bit special. Although this shrine has a mausoleum on the mainland, its torii on the high seas has spread its fame beyond just Japan's borders!

Built in around 690 at the end of a rocky outcrop, the "Torii of the God of the Sea", kamiiso no torii in Japanese, is the main center of attraction of the place of worship. Swept by the waves of the Pacific Ocean that come to crash on the rocks, it periodically emerges from the waves with the rhythm of the tides.

Oarai torii in the sea

Chureito Pagoda

Flick/ reggiepen

Motosuminari shrine

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