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Itsukushima Shrine in Miyajima Island

Miyajima is an island just an hour by tram (to its last station) from Hiroshima Station. It takes 30 minutes via JR Line Train. From the last tram station, I took a huge ferry to the island for ten minutes.

Miyajima Island is Japan’s third most visited tourist attraction. Here, you’ll see the reason what most tourist come for: the Itsukushima Shrine, a UNESCO World Heritage Site

JAPAN, THE LAND OF THE RISING SUN

Itsukushima Shrine in Miyajima Island is just outside Hiroshima in Japan

Itsukushima Shrine in Miyajima Island is just outside Hiroshima.

This a huge vermillion- colored O-Torii (Grand Gate) has been standing in the sea for years, since 1875! 

Itsukushima Shrine in Miyajima Island is just outside Hiroshima in Japan

Itsukushima Shrine in Miyajima Island is just outside Hiroshima.

In low and high tide, the Grand Gate is a symbol of Shintoism, an ethnic religion in Japan. 

Itsukushima Shrine in Miyajima Island is just outside Hiroshima in Japan

Itsukushima Shrine in Miyajima Island is just outside Hiroshima.

On a clear day, it’s very photogenic. It’s a very common postcard picture anywhere in Japan and it’s in every tourist maps, books, videos about Japan. Even the ultimate guide book, Lonely Planet /easyazon_link] carries a photo of it.

Itsukushima Shrine in Miyajima Island is just outside Hiroshima in Japan

Itsukushima Shrine in Miyajima Island is just outside Hiroshima.

Unfortunately, I went there on a shitty day where the heavy clouds totally spoiled it. I was in the mood for camwhoring but the weather wasn’t really cooperating. It is indeed photogenic! I can imagine that. I was the only tourist who took off his shoes and waded into the sea and took a shot of the O-torii in the opposite side. That’s how determined and dedicated I am. LOL…

Fortunately, it was low tide so people had the chance to really get a bit close to this monstrous gate.

Itsukushima Shrine in Miyajima Island is just outside Hiroshima in Japan

Itsukushima Shrine in Miyajima Island is just outside Hiroshima.

About two hundred meters from this torii, is the Itsukushima Shrine which I really wonder of wonders why it was designated as UNESCO World Heritage. It’s not really that different from other temples in Japan I’ve been to. It’s historical significance, maybe?

Itsukushima Shrine in Miyajima Island is just outside Hiroshima in Japan

Itsukushima Shrine in Miyajima Island is just outside Hiroshima.

I stayed in the island for 6 hours. I walked up to the mountains and walked and walked and walked. There are temples around but, hello, I don’t wanna see more temples after almost two weeks of backpacking in Japan.

Itsukushima Shrine in Miyajima Island is just outside Hiroshima in Japan

Itsukushima Shrine in Miyajima Island is just outside Hiroshima.

At the last hour of my stay, I sat down in front of the O-Torii and waited for the next ferry back to Hiroshima. 

Itsukushima Shrine in Miyajima Island is just outside Hiroshima in Japan

Itsukushima Shrine in Miyajima Island is just outside Hiroshima.

And here’s one thing about Miyajima Island: No deaths and births are allowed in the island, especially near the Shrine. I was told that pregnant women who are about to deliver should be in the mainland days before the expected birth date. And it goes the same with deaths.

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