It is not a tourist spot.

Let’s rethink our basic attitudes in visiting shrines and temples.

How to be polite to Mt. Inari – it is not a tourist spot.
Pure prayers will surely reach the Deity. ascetic monks performing a ritual fire ceremony

What Mt. Inari truly is.

Kyoto has now been established as a worldwide tourist city. Above all, so many tourists from overseas visit Fushimi Inari Taisha that even Japanese tourists regard it as not a shrine but a tourist spot. Here, let me talk about what Mt. Inari truly is, which has been somewhat misunderstood.

Chapter 1

This is not a tourist spot.

the crowded main shrine of Fushimi Inari Taisha.

Every year, Fushimi Inari Taisha is ranked the number one tourist spot by tourists from overseas and crowded by many tourists from Japan and worldwide.

Meanwhile, there are angry comments on some internet by those who complain about the lousy customer services in some shrines and tea houses, saying “Shinto priests and maidens had bad attitudes!”, “A clerk at a tea house got angry at me when I touched a product.”

I completely understand what they are saying because they were not familiar with Mt. Inari. Still, what you should know is that Fushimi Inari Shrine is NOT a tourist spot.

shrine maidens and charms

Mt. Inari is a sacred mountain for religious training. A long time ago, trainee monks and those with incurable diseases used to climb this mountain in white clothing as a part of waterfall meditation or prayer. Mainly, tea houses around the mountain were used initially as hotels where the faithful stayed, visiting from far away. As times go by, the amount of the faithful in need of lodging decreased, and only businesses serving beverages and refreshments remained.

Mt. Inari

In the old days, visitors used to pass a torii gate with a bow, walking on the side of the pathway modestly because the center of the path is where deities walk. Furthermore, visitors used to bring back trash such as lunch boxes they brought into Mt. Inari because they visited for religious practice. And also, they were grateful to landladies and clerks of stores, who took care of them. I have been visiting Mt. Inari for decades before it became a tourist attraction. These years I can hardly bear to see the wrong attitude of tourists. As a third party, I would like to tell you all, tourists, how to be polite to Mt. Inari, sympathizing with confused landladies and clerks.


Ganriki-san Shrine, a deity known to few

Miraculous blessings for business, management and investment

Miraculous blessings of Ganriki-san have been passed down from generation to generation.