Kamigamo-jinja Shrine (Kamowake-ikazuchi-jinja Shrine)
Kamigamo-jinja, the oldest shrine in Kyoto, is known for its Aoi Matsuri (Hollyhock Festival), one of Kyotos three big festivals. The sanctuaries are said to have been built at the end of the 7th century. These sanctuaries stand on a huge site which has an area of approximately 660,000 sq m. The main shrine (where the deity is enshrined) and the Gonden (the temporary main shrine where the deity is enshrined while the main shrine was being built) are designated as National Treasures, while 34 other buildings of this shrine are designated as Important Cultural Properties. Each one of these structures is also recognized by UNESCO as World Cultural Heritage. In the world of Shinto (a traditional and unique religion of the Japanese people, as well as the lifestyle and ideology supporting this religion), only Ise-jingu in Mie Prefecture wields more authority than Kamigamo-jinja. The shrine is surrounded by stone walls and white earthen walls. The neighborhood of uniquely shaped houses in which past Shinto priests at this shrine lived has been selected by the national government as an Important Traditional Residential Area. Some of these houses are open to the public.'
Address: 339 Kamigamo-motoyama, Kita-ku, Kyoto-shi, Kyoto
Admission Fee: 500 yen (Main hall, regular fee)
Closed: May 5, 9-17, New Years holidays (Dec. 21-Jan. 16)'
[Bus]JR Kyoto Stn./Bus/30-min. ride/Kamigamo-misonobashi Stop/10-min. walk