Kyoto: Fushimi Inari Taisha (Japan)

Fushimi Inari Taisha

68 Fukakusa Yabunouchichō, Fushimi-ku, Kyōto-shi, Kyōto-fu 612-0882, Japan

Traditional (711-1499)

Fushimi Inari Taisha, Kyoto 13_Stephen Varady Photo ©

As a child I saw images from Kyoto, Japan. They were of a series of orange torii gates, so when I first visited Kyoto I expected to immediately see these gates. I didn’t, and it took me some time to track down where I might find what I was looking for. Inari Station is two stops south of the main train station, and this is where the Fushimi Inari Taisha journey begins.

Fushimi Inari Taisha, Kyoto 01_Stephen Varady Photo ©

Fushimi Inari Taisha, Kyoto 02_Stephen Varady Photo ©

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Venturing through a series of larger entry gates you will find a number of beautiful shrines.

Fushimi Inari Taisha, Kyoto 06_Stephen Varady Photo ©

With a multitude of meticulous and beautiful details.

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Fushimi Inari Taisha, Kyoto 08_Stephen Varady Photo ©

Including these very special downpipes.

Fushimi Inari Taisha, Kyoto 11_Stephen Varady Photo ©

Fushimi Inari Taisha, Kyoto 10_Stephen Varady Photo ©

Fushimi Inari Taisha, Kyoto 09_Stephen Varady Photo ©

This place is about the experience of a journey…

Fushimi Inari Taisha, Kyoto 12_Stephen Varady Photo ©

Fushimi Inari Taisha, Kyoto 13_Stephen Varady Photo ©

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… with shrines along the way for leaving prayers, making wishes and giving thanks to the foxes.

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Fushimi Inari Taisha, Kyoto 19_Stephen Varady Photo ©

Fushimi Inari Taisha, Kyoto 20_Stephen Varady Photo ©

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Fushimi Inari Taisha, Kyoto 24_Stephen Varady Photo ©

One travels through nature and through constructed elements, with multiple rows of torii gates creating a dramatic visual and spatial experience.

Fushimi Inari Taisha, Kyoto 26_Stephen Varady Photo ©

Fushimi Inari Taisha, Kyoto 25_Stephen Varady Photo ©

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Torii gates began to be donated by individuals and businesses during the Edo Period from 1603.

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Fushimi Inari Taisha, Kyoto 30_Stephen Varady Photo ©

This most dense section of the gates is one of the most powerful parts of the journey.

Fushimi Inari Taisha, Kyoto 31_Stephen Varady Photo ©

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As the older torii gates deteriorate, they are replaced with newer versions.

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Fushimi Inari Taisha, Kyoto 38_Stephen Varady Photo ©

Fushimi Inari Taisha, Kyoto 39_Stephen Varady Photo ©

Fushimi Inari Taisha, Kyoto 40_Stephen Varady Photo ©

Fushimi Inari Taisha has also been an inspiration to a multitude of architects who have visited and been touched by the place.

IMAGES

FURTHER INFORMATION:

Place: Fushimi Inari Taisha

Architect: Traditional

Additional Information: Japan Guide.com

Map: Fushimi Inari Taisha

 

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