Ise Grand Shrine

Mie Things to Do

Mie, Japan Apr. 13 Sat 10:52PM

15.7 / 60.2

Also known as Ise Jingū

Ise City is made up of two main Shinto shrines, one of which is the most significant Shinto shrine in Japan: the Inner Shrine. In Japanese, this shrine is called Naikū. This sacred place enshrines Amaterasu Omikami – the Shinto Sun Goddess. The Outer Shrine is known as Gekū.

History

The Inner Shrine dates over 2000 years back. Both the Ise Shrines are torn down and rebuilt every 20 years, in accordance with an ancient Shinto tradition. As such, the next total rejuvenation of the shrines will be in 2033.

Hiking to the Inner Shrine from the Uji Bridge can take anywhere between 60 to 90 minutes. This path crosses underneath two large gates made from the main pillars of the previous incarnation of the shrine. The Ise Grand Shrines are incredibly simple, but this allows them to have a dreamlike aura of serenity about them.  

Purification

Before entering the shrine, visitors must cleanse their hands and mouth at the purification trough, found somewhere outside the entrance. A photo is attached below! The Ise Shrine offer another option for cleansing – the riverside purification site. Sacred water from the Isuzugawa River streams down into this shallow flowing body of water.

Festivals

The Shrines holds a couple annual festivals for those interested in experiencing one!

Tsukinamisai is held in June and December

Kannamesai Festival is held in October. This festival involves prayers for good weather.

There are also a number of celebratory festivals such as that for the New Year, the past emperors, purification rituals for priests, and the Emperor’s birthday.

 

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