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Travel Tripadvisor's Top 10 shrines and temples of Japan

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Unswerving cyclist
14 Mar 2002
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Tripadvisor Japan recently nominated the Top 30 Japanese temples and shrines, based on the reviews and ratings of Japanese visitors. See their ranking below, adorned with beautiful imagery:

And here are the Top 10 in tabulated fashion:

1.Ise Grand ShrineMie Prefecture (map)The Ise Grand Shrine (伊勢神宮, Ise Jingū), located in Ise, is a Shinto shrine dedicated to the sun goddess Amaterasu.
2.Ōmiwa ShrineNara Prefecture (map)Ōmiwa Shrine (大神神社) is one of the oldest Shinto shrines in Japan and contains no sacred images or objects as it is believed to serve Mount Miwa, the mountain on which it stands.
3.Izumo Taisha ShrineShimane Prefecture (map)Izumo Taisha Shrine (出雲大社) is one of the most ancient and important Shinto shrines in Japan.
4.Yudonosan ShrineYamagata Prefecture (map)Yudonosan Shrine (湯殿山神社) is one of the Three Mountains of Dewa and the holiest of the Dewa Sanzan shrines. Pilgrims and visitors have to enter the shrine barefoot, and photography is not allowed.
5.Rurikoin TempleKyōto (map)Rurikoin Temple (瑠璃光院) is surrounded by beautiful nature and includes several notable landmarks such as the beautiful entrance and approach, the Japanese-style gardens 'Ruri no Niwa' and 'Garyo no Niwa', the drawing-room “Shoin', the teahouse 'Kikaku-tei' and more. It is only open to the public twice a year, in spring and in autumn.
6.Enkōji TempleKōchi Prefecture (map)Enkōji (延光寺) is a Chisan Shingon temple in Sukumo. It is the 39th temple on the Shikoku-88-temple pilgrimage. The main image is of Yakushi Nyorai, the Buddha of Healing and Medicine.
7.Itsukushima ShrineHiroshima Prefecture (map)Itsukushima Shrine (厳島神社) is best known for its floating torii gate. The shrine complex is listed as a UNESCO World Heritage Site, and the Japanese government has designated several buildings and possessions as National Treasures.
8.Eikan-dō Zenrin-ji TempleKyōto (map)Eikan-dō Zenrin-ji Temple (永観堂禅林寺) is the head temple for the Seizan branch of Japan's Jōdo-shū (Pure Land) school of Buddhism. It was founded by Shinshō, a pupil of Kūkai, and is famous for its fall foliage and for its prominence in the past as a centre of learning.
9.Sanjūsangen-dō TempleKyōto (map)Sanjūsangen-dō Temple (三十三間堂) is a Buddhist temple of the Tendai sect. It is famous for its collection of sculptures, including 1001 standing Thousand-armed Kannon, 28 standing attendants, a statue of Fūjin and a statue of Raijin, and the principal image of the temple, a big seated statue of Thousand-armed Kannon, all of them designated National Treasures in the category of sculptures.
10.Udo-jingūMiyazaki Prefecture (map)Udo-jingū (鵜戸神宮) is the mythical birthplace of Emperor Jimmu's father Ugayafukiaezu. The shrine is located in a cave in the side of the cliff, near the Nichinan coast of Miyazaki. Its main hall is in a cavern with a terrific view of the ocean.

So far, I have been to Itsukushima Shrine, Ise Grand Shrine, and Izumo Shrine. I guess all the rest has to go onto the bucket list. 😅


27 Dec 2003
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It’s a shame that only one of the temples/shrines is east of Mie Prefecture, and none of them are in the Kanto area.

nice gaijin

Resident Realist
8 Aug 2005
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There are just too many good ones, but the full list of 30 is a little more inclusive. I've been to 1/3rd so far, plenty left to go.
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