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Travel Daijōkyū - public viewing of Imperial shrine complex


Unswerving cyclist
14 Mar 2002
If you are in Tokyo this weekend and close to the imperial palace you should consider visiting the Daijōkyū (大嘗宮), the shrine complex that was erected in the honmaru of the Imperial Palace on the occasion of last month's enthronement ceremony. The shrine serves as a stage for the Daijōsai (大嘗祭) rite, a part of the Great Thanksgiving Festival in which the emperor makes offerings of rice to Amaterasu and other deities.


Photo credit: IHA

The Daijōkyū consists of thirty wooden buildings and will be open for public viewing until tomorrow, 8 December, before being dismantled. The complex is open between 09:00 and 15:00. On the first day, 21 November, over 70,000 visitors strolled through the usually off-limits Inui-dori toward the shrine complex.


Photo credit: Kyodo

More information is available on the website of the Imperial Household Agency.

Access map:

Route map:

Some superb schematics of the complex in this article:

Unfortunately, I was too busy this week to queue up and missed this once-in-a-lifetime opportunity. If you were able to make it, please share your story. :)
The Daijokyu halls, where imperial enthronement-related rites were performed last month, drew 782,081 visitors during the 18 days between Nov. 21 and Sunday when the site was open to the public. The number rose sharply from 439,780 visitors also over 18 days on the previous occasion in 1990 following the 1989 imperial succession.

Emperor Naruhito performed the Daijosai grand thanksgiving rites, considered the most important enthronement-related event, at the Daijokyu complex in the Imperial Palace in mid-November.

The public was allowed to view the complex of about 40 buildings from Nov. 21. From Nov. 30, Inui Street in the palace was also opened to the public until Sunday to enjoy the autumn leaves. The number of visitors to Daijokyu increased apparently because Inui Street was also opened for the first time since the enthronement. The street started to be opened to public twice a year in 2014 to commemorate the 80th birthday of Emperor Emeritus Akihito.

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