All photographs taken by Robert-Gilles martineau
When In Fukuoka City for the first time, being religious-minded or not a site not to be missed is Kushida shinto Shrine/Kushida Shrine/櫛田神社, a Shinto shrine located in Hakata-ku. Dedicated to the deities Amaterasu and Susanoo, it is said to have been founded in 757. Its visit can enjoyed at all times of the year although the New Year and during the Hakata Gion Yamakasa Festival during the first two weeks of July are arguably the best periods of the year!
A horned lion guard, called “shishi or komainu” seems to ensure the safety of the donated Japanese sake kegs behind it!
The whole visit makes for a truly great photographic experience of a typical Japanese Shinto Shrine, and I can assure you are bound for some surprises!
just follow me for this first visit and I can guarantee you will wish to come back again and stroll around the place at your own pace!
The other lion guard with its maw open also guarding the sake kegs!
Sake kegs will be found at Shinto Shrines only and not at Buddhist Temples as sake is considered as the food of gods in Shintoism.
The whole shrine is actually a group of them erected at various times and their lion guards differ!
There are always two lion gurads at each shrine, one with its maw closed,…
The other with its maw open!
On the new Year visitors are requested to walk through the mouth of a giant Ameterasu Goddess under a torii/sacred bird gate!
Placed at both entrances, but do not worry they won’t eat you!
You will also meet fox guards/kitsune meaning that the shrine is dedicated to Inari, the Goddess of Plenty!
Its counterpart is carrying a sacred scroll inits mouth.
Both look unusually fierce!
Torii/sacred bird gate can be fund in stone or red-painted wood, alone or in rows!
A whole mixture of torii!
A small but highly venerated shrine at the very end of the torii tunnel!
A stone torii arch?
You will discover a whole menagerie as well such as this sacred bull!
Sacred cranes guarding a natural salty hot spring!
A Lord Horse!
Belgians will be astounded to find a Japanese version of their Manneken Piss!
Keep a sharp eye for the bonsai/miniature trees!
you cane even buy (for 50 yen) your own fortune-telling slip/o-mikuji in five different languages: Japanese, English, Korean, Taiwanese and Chinese!
My fortune-telling slip in English!
Now, what did it say?
Wishing you the same!
Access: 1-41, Kamikawabata-machi, Hakata-ku, Fukuoka City, Fukuoka Prefecture 812-0026
Between Hakata JR Station and Nakagawa River, near Gion Station.
RECOMMENDED RELATED WEBSITES
Navigating Nagoya by Paige, Shop with Intent by Debbie, BULA KANA in Fiji, Kraemer’s Culinary blog by Frank Kraemer in New York,Tokyo Food File by Robbie Swinnerton, Green Tea Club by Satoshi Nihonyanagi in Shizuoka!, Mind Some by Tina in Taiwan, Le Manger by Camille Oger (French), The Indian Tourist, Masala Herb by Helene Dsouza in Goa, India, Mummy I Can Cook! by Shu Han in London, Pie
rre.Cuisine, Francescannotwrite, My White Kitchen, Foodhoe, Chucks Eats, Things that Fizz & Stuff, Five Euro Food by Charles,Red Shallot Kitchen by Priscilla,With a Glass, Nami | Just One Cookbook, Peach Farm Studio, Clumsyfingers by Xethia, PepperBento, Hapabento, Kitchen Cow, Lunch In A Box, Susan at Arkonlite, Vegan Lunch Box; Tokyo Tom Baker, Daily Food Porn/Osaka, Only Nature Food Porn, Happy Little Bento, J-Mama’s Kitchen, Cook, Eat, Play, Repeat, Bento Lunch Blog (German), Adventures In Bento, Anna The Red’s Bento Factory, Ohayo Bento,
Must-see tasting websites:
-Wine: Palate To Pen, Warren Bobrow, Cellar Tours, Ancient Fire Wines Blog
-Beer: Another Pint, Please!, Beering In Good Mind: All about Craft Beer in Kansai by Nevitt Reagan!
ABRACADABREW, Magical Craftbeer from Japan
-Whisky: Nonjatta: All about whisky in Japan by Stefan Van Eycken
-Japanese Pottery to enjoy your favourite drinks: Yellin Yakimono Gallery
Non gastronomy must-see sites by Shizuoka Residents
HIGHOCTANE/HAIOKU by Nick Itoh in Shizuoka City