Shimogamo Shrine, Kyoto

Visiting Shimogamo Shrine on a beautiful February morning

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was a pure bliss.

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Built in the 6th century, Shimogamo Shrine (下鴨神社) is the oldest shrine in Kyoto. It is an UNESCO World Heritage Site, dedicated to Tamayori-hime (玉依姫) and her father, Kamo Taketsunomi (賀茂建角身) – god and goddess of Japanese mythology.

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Located at the junction of two rivers and surrounded by an urban forest, the shrine ground was quiet and peaceful.

Next to the Taikobashi Bridge ( 太鼓橋)

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Ume (Japanese plum) trees stood

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In full bloom, they were an astonishing sight.

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Afterwards, I wandered about little alleys in search of Kyoto’s original – Soymilk Ramen.

The yuba (tofu skin) on top was fresh and the milky-colored broth dense and flavorful.

The day I shunned away from tourists, I discovered the Zen of a city.

Shimogamo Shrine (下鴨神社)
Address:  〒606-0807 京都市左京区下鴨泉川町59
Phone: +81 75-781-0010
Webpage: http://www.shimogamo-jinja.or.jp/

Mamezen(豆禅)
Address: 京都府京都市左京区下鴨東高木町13-4
Phone: +81 75-703-5731

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23 thoughts on “Shimogamo Shrine, Kyoto

  1. Fantastic photos! Such beautiful buildings. I have a question — In the first photo, the tall orange gate structure. What do they call this? I often see this, even with the Chinese, it seems to me it must have some sort of symbol. In San Francisco, on the way to Half Moon Bay there is a cemetery where many Asians are buried. In that cemetery, again they have that huge structure, gate entry or gazebo. I would like to learn more about what this means to them. It’s very beautiful.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Thank you Brilliantviewpoint. I think the gate is called Torii gate. I found the following explanation off Wikipedia. “A torii (鳥居?, literally bird abode, /ˈtɔəri.iː/) is a traditional Japanese gate most commonly found at the entrance of or within a Shinto shrine, where it symbolically marks the transition from the profane to the sacred (see sacred-profane dichotomy).[1] The presence of a torii at the entrance is usually the simplest way to identify Shinto shrines, and a small torii icon represents them on Japanese road maps.[note 1] They are however a common sight at Japanese Buddhist temples too, where they stand at the entrance of the temple’s own shrine, called chinjusha (鎮守社?, tutelary god shrine) and are usually very small.”

      Liked by 1 person

      1. Wow — thank you for sending the explanation. i think you have been to San Francisco quite a bit. Have you been to Half Moon Bay? On the drive up there, you will find a cemetery. When you drive around the cemetery you will see the most beautiful Chinese gate. It’s incredible, because you have the hills in the background. See this link, when you open it, you should see the Chinese gate I am talking about. If you are back there it would be worth going through that cemetery. There are some very special tomb stones. One Chinese man brought his parents back from China and he had a huge piece of stone with the story of their life written on it. Here you go, and thanks again for the information above. I will do some research on this.http://www.skylawnmemorialpark.com/who-we-are/history-and-staff

        Liked by 1 person

  2. We are so confused where to go. We think we may travel end of year or early next year. Japan would be a nice cultural experience for us. Your winter travels to Japan make us want to go there then. I also have a cousin in Thailand. Too many choices! Your Japan travels are tempting my travel bug.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Dear Jebusandandrea, Japan would be a good choice. Try to go during the fall foliage season or early spring like we did. I’ve never been to Thailand, but I heard so many good things about it. Whichever place you pick, I hope you have a fantastic trip and have fun planning 🙂

      Liked by 1 person

      1. We finally made up our minds! As much as we want to see Kyoto, we decided we will see grizzly bears! We’ll go to BC again. Then for our anniversary we’ll see polar bears 2018. We need to save for the polar bears and that gives us enough time. We decided to see nature first since there’s a threat they may not exist in the long run. I was doing searches on expedia for flights and hotel 9 nights to Kyoto – when I saw the prices realized it may be slightly less expensive than grizzly bears. For the polar bears we are eying the place you recommended.

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