Every year from the end of April to the beginning of May, Kasama City, Ibaraki Prefecture, hosts the “Kasama Atsuji Festival” with about 8,500 shares of azaleas. There will also be the “Kasama Fire Festival”, a festival of pottery with more than 200 potters. Each event attracts many people. However, especially in this season, it is recommended to visit Kasama Inari Jinja Shrine, where wisteria over four hundred years old is beautiful. One is the double-layered wisteria of a natural monument designated by the prefecture, and flowers bloom like bunches of grapes. A must see is the beautiful decoration on the back of the main hall of the “gongen-zukuri” style (a style of shrine buildings in Japan) of the country designated important cultural property.
Kasama Inari Jinja Shrine was founded in 651, the time of Emperor Kotoku, and is one of the three greatest Inari in Japan. There are many historical buildings such as the east gate and Emaden (hall for votive horse tablets) in addition to the main hall of the country designated important cultural property, and there is also an art museum that imitates Shosoin (Tresure Hall) in Nara.
The wisteria of the precinct is sinistorse vines, and the flower is dark purple, and the ear of the flower is about 30 cm in length.
Among the historical buildings in the precinct, the east gate is the building of imimoya-zukuri (a hip-and-gable roof construction), which was rebuilt in 1816, and Kezuna (a rope made from hair) dedicated to the left and right.
Also, in front of the east gate, there is “Sazare Stone”, which is also captured by the Japanese national anthem “Kimigayo”. “Sazare Stone” is one of gemstones and is said to be healed only by the view, but “Sazare Stone” of Kasama Inari Jinja Shrine is also fascinated by its unique beauty.
Kasama Inari Jinja Shrine’s precinct also features the cute Nakamise (shopping street in the precincts of a shrine), which offers souvenirs and meals of the Ibaraki prefecture.
There is also a shop dedicated to omiki (sacred wine or sake) in Kasama Inari right in front of Nakamise. The “Prayer Liquor”, which received the prayer of Kasama Inari Jinja Shrine, is a good drink of business prosperity and good luck prayer. Please stop by when you visit it.
The establishment of the Kasama Inari Jinja Shrine is said to be 651 years, and it is counted as one of Japan’s three major Inari, along with Fushimi in Kyoto and Yutoku in Saga. There is the history of over 1,350 years, and as God of ordinary people it is widely gathering faith from the whole country. In addition, visitors come from all over Japan, and the number is 3.5 million per year. And on the first three days of the New Year, more than 800,000 worshipers visited and boasted the No. 1 place in Ibaraki Prefecture.
The main hall of the Kasama Inari Jinja Shrine was rebuilt in the late Edo period, and it is gongen-zukuri style (a style of shrine buildings in Japan) with roofs being finished with copper tiles (made of copper-laminated wooden molds). It was designated as an important cultural property of the country in 1988. At the main shrine there was elaborate sculptures such as the “Santo Happounirami no zu” (the three heads dragon staring at the viewer from wherever it is seen in everywhere.) and “Ranteikyokusui-zu” by the hands of the master , Its appearance is really beautiful.
There are also many historical buildings such as East Gate and Emaden (hall for votive horse tablets) in addition to the main hall of the national designated important cultural property, and there is also an art museum imitating Shosoin (the Treasure House) of Nara in the precincts.
Also in the precincts there are two wisteria of 400 years old, one of them, Yae-Fuji next to the shrine is designated as a prefectural natural treasure.
Another wisteria on the side of the tower is a big wisteria which length is about 150 cm. This is also designated as a natural treasure in Ibaraki prefecture, and around these early May, these two wisteria bloom magnificent flowers and give a gentle aroma.
The size of the wistaria-trellis boast the largest size in Ibaraki prefecture. The precincts are full of sweet and sour aroma and are crowded with visitors for the flowers of the deep purple blooming big clusters.
|Name:||Kasama Inari Jinja Shrine|
|Address:||Kasama 1 Kasama, Ibaraki 309-1611 Japan|
|Access:||JR Mito-sen Line “Kasama-eki Station” (10 minutes by car)|