Fushimi Inari-taisha Shrine -Kyoto

Several years ago I was able to take several days of personal travel in conjunction with a work trip to Japan. I spent most of my time in Kyoto. I visited a few of the many temples and shrines in the city, but by far my favorite was Fushimi Inari-taisha. It is the headquarters shrine to Inari, originally in charge of rice and sake, but now a more general symbol of prosperity in business.

Torii gates at Fushimi Inari-taisha.

Torii gates at Fushimi Inari-taisha.

The most striking feature of Fushimi Inari-taisha are the thousands of torii gates of all sizes, with large one lining the paths of the mountain the shrine is located on and smaller ones throughout the small shrines and cemeteries throughout the property. The torii gates are donated by businesses, families, and individuals as thanks for their prosperity.

More torii gates.

More torii gates.

And more torii gates...

And more torii gates…

And some more torii gates.

And some more torii gates.

The other notable thing at the Fushimi Inari-taisha are the statues of kitsune, or foxes, seen as messengers for Inari. These kitsune hold granary keys in their mouths as symbols of prosperity.

Kistune (foxes) guard a torii gate.

Kistune (foxes) guard a torii gate.

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