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Explore Shinjuku’s Serene Shrines!

Dec 13, 2018

Shinjuku is one of the most well-known cities in Japan. It’s especially famous for being a bustling urban area. However, there are also several quiet spots hidden in the city as well. Experience a different side of Shinjuku by visiting the following shrines!

Shinjuku Juni-so Kumano Shrine

Kumano Shrine is located in Shinjuku Chuo Park, and is a shrine with cultural and historic importance. The solemn black shrine stands in contrast to the greenery of the park. Even though it is in the middle of the big city, the shrine has a very quiet and peaceful atmosphere. You can see the Shinjuku Metropolitan Government Building standing tall in the distance, but it will seem very far away when you’re on the shrine grounds!



There are many small shrines located to the right of the main shrine. Keep an eye out for the small pond with short red bridge crossing it.



At Otorisan-sha, one of the sub-shrines, the guardian lion-dog’s feet have not been entirely carved out. This is somewhat of a rare thing to see!

Location information

SHNJUKU 12SOKUMANOJINJA

SHNJUKU 12SOKUMANOJINJA shrine is the main shrine of the Shinjuku area, including Nishi-Shinjuku, the area around Shinjuku Station and Kabuki-cho. The origins of the shrine reach back to the 15 centur…

Address
2-11-2 Nishi-Shinjuku, Shinjuku-ku, Tokyo
Telephone number
03-3343-5521
URL
http://12so-kumanojinja.jp/
Hours of operation

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Hanazono Shrine

In the middle of Shinjuku’s shopping district sits Hanazono Shrine, a solemn structure that has been watching over the city since the 17th century. The beauty of the shrine changes with the seasons, so lots of people come all throughout the year to experience its beauty.

The Tori no Ichi festival is held at this shrine three times in November every year. This festival is a chance for business owners to pray for financial success. An average of 600,000 people attend this popular festival. The hundreds of small lanterns on display during Tori no Ichi are sure to leave a strong impression!



You can enter the shrine grounds from Yasukuni-dori Street by going through the red tori gate and walking along the wooded path. As you can see in the photo above, there are a lot of food stalls selling snacks during the festival!



The Tori no Ichi festival is synonymous with decorative bamboo rakes, called kumade in Japanese. The rakes are said to bring luck closer to you, so not only the aforementioned business owners make their way to Hanazono Shrine to get one! There are lots of designs and shapes, so you’ll have fun just looking at these beautiful designs.

Location information

Hanazono Shrine

This shrine in Shinjuku has drawn the faithful since before the establishment of the Edo shogunate by Tokugawa Ieyasu in 1603 and continues to be cherished as an urban oasis to this day. The vivid ver…

Address
5-17-3 Shinjuku, Shinjuku-ku, Tokyo 160-0222
Telephone number
03-3209- 5265
URL
http://www.hanazono-jinja.or.jp/mt/top/
Hours of operation
· Prayers 9:30–16:30
· Office 8:00–20:00

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Inari Kio Shrine

The final shrine on our list is Inari Kio Shrine in Kabukicho, the city that never sleeps. Even though it is surrounded by skyscrapers, the shrine grounds are an oasis in the big city.



There are a lot of interesting things to see on the small shrine grounds. For example, the water basin being supported an oni (demon or ogre).



The suikinkutsu, a hollow bamboo reed that when filled with water will tip over and hit the nearby stones to make a wonderful sound, is also a unique sight!

Oni may not have a great image, but a long time ago oni were known as God’s strength, so there are a number of shrines dedicated to them. However, this is the only shrine with "Kio" (oni king) in the name. This is a very quiet and relaxing shrine, so if you find yourself in Kabukicho be sure to stop by!

Inari Kio Shrine
2-17-5 Kabukicho, Shinjuku-ku, Tokyo
Telephone Number: 03-3200-2904

The hustle and bustle is one of the main reasons that people come to Shinjuku. However, if you're feeling a bit overwhelmed and want to take a break, recharge at one of these quiet oases in the city!

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