Amano Iwato Shrine

After rowing and casually strolling around Takachiho Gorge I was on the road again; heading for Amano Iwato Shrine, as seen in a pamphlet I’d been given at my B&B.

46482646_346528956156120_5238840673452425216_n
My little kei car proving everyone wrong against all odds

 

The drive was beautiful; the skies were clear and the sun was shining as I followed the road around the mountain with the green valley on my side.

46491499_1394814967316183_7769194959101493248_n

When I got there, I walked through a huge Tori gate, washed my hands and saw the shrine enclosed away from the main path.

46471923_274492526592226_753687818949099520_n

The little hideaway, being cut off from the main path, was quieter and I immediately felt calm. This feeling was furthered by the constantly falling yellow leaves of the giant tree sitting quietly proud. I stayed here for a while, just taking it all in.

46517079_603466423415814_6278945404511846400_n

46521259_2214907688760559_1126664664424382464_n

When I eventually decided to go, I saw a sign on my way out and, being unable to read kanji, decided to follow it blindly.

46457916_581689952269469_5607305707322867712_n

The walk took me from the shrine’s gravel path onto the public street where there were street vendors and cafes. The cafes were selling ice-cream and offering lookouts onto the river well below.

46511176_348471289320899_5518309170291408896_n
The whole experience was made 10x better with the Autumn colours

One of the street vendors was well advertised by a cat sat nearby, meowing at the owner, who had obviously given into its previous demands for food.

46473966_2642596925966122_4366012433102274560_n.jpg
This little guy was adorably relentless

I stayed here for a bit too, just chuckling at the non-verbal conversation going on between the vendor and the cat.

After the cat was shooed to a distance of 5 metres from the stall I headed off, where the directions led me down into the trees, over a bridge and by the river.

46503911_267346657282530_4049212123476131840_n

46486069_735131516854254_7800436942054621184_n

Here I came across Amanoyasu Kawara!

46485652_184280622514260_1796423303376666624_n

46468587_367480777321401_2888773996604555264_n
Excuse my poorly taken photo… I got excited

I turned the corner of a narrow path and was pretty stunned by this cave. It sat right on the river bank and was COVERED in little pebble piles.

46472583_388583685220038_9125291983294693376_n
Prize for whoever counts the rocks
46432652_317714582400142_8950533530706771968_n
Trying to control my clumsy flaily legs from volleying the rocks was harder than I thought

I decided to research this place after my visit, after getting only small bits of information while I was there.

46498342_653945315003108_1322895174648463360_n

I found that this spot was the place that the Goddess Amaterasu was believed to have fled to, in anger of her brother’s violence. This led to the world being plunged into darkness and caused the Gods to gather at this spot to try and draw her back out.

 

Despite the well-known beauty of Takachiho Gorge, I feel like Amanoyasu Kawara is deserving of attention in it’s own aesthetic and spiritual right.

46458733_365138427593858_3760039942600785920_n
Leaving my mark in the niches of Japan

All photos taken by me! 

2 thoughts on “Amano Iwato Shrine

  1. Hiya Jess, Another eye opening blog about Japan & it’s hidden treasures.
    I enjoyed reading your blog & getting a insight to what your seeing.
    Love you lots x

    Like

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Google photo

You are commenting using your Google account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.