This shrine on Mount Tsukuba, one of the most famous sacred mountains, has been worshipped for over 3000 years
This is an historic shrine dedicated to the sacred mountain Tsukuba. Mount Tsukuba, with two peaks has been associated with Izanagi and Izanami, god and goddess of Japanese mythology, and worshipped as gods who protect people against evil and illness, and bless people with relationships and children. It is said that the worship of the mountain started about 3000 years ago and the shrine was founded in the 7th century. During the Edo Period (1603-1868), the shrine was a kimon (demon gate) to protect Edo (now Tokyo) and received a large amount of donations from the government, which was used to construct pavilions.
Wild birds visit the shrine and seasonal flowers and trees grow freshly on the grounds. Many highlights include a 150-year-old indigenous camphor tree and hydrangeas exhibiting blue gradation in early summer. The hydrangeas flower season is longer here compared with that in towns, so you can enjoy their full bloom even in late July.
The place is dotted with historically valuable buildings, such as Itsukushima Shrine, Hie Shrine, and Kasuga Shrine, which house many Important Cultural Properties of Japan. One of the notable features is a roofed bridge named Goshinkyo, a cultural property designated by Ibaraki Prefecture. The bridge was built in the 17th century by Tokugawa Iemitsu, who was Shogun at the time. Worshippers are allowed to pass the bridge only during Gozagae Festival in spring and fall (April 1 and November 1) and Toshikoshi Festival (February 10 and 11).
Address: Tsukuba, Tukuba City, Ibaraki
Admission Fee: Free admission to the grounds
Directions: 40 minutes by Tsukubasan Shuttle Bus from Tsukuba Express Tsukuba Station (one hour from Tokyo) to Tsukuba-jinja entrance and 5 minutes by foot. (Car) 40 minutes from Tsuchiura-kita Interchange on the Joban Expressway (a fee is charged for car parking).