In Kyoto you can’t go very far without hitting some or other spiritual place, and having already been distracted by the interesting Kitano Tenmangu shrine on our way to the Golden Pavilion (following our visit to Nijo Castle), we next found ourselves wandering through the grounds of the Hirano Shrine – completely by happy accident of course!
Known for its many trees and as a premier Cherry blossom viewing spot, this popular Shinto shrine was established in the year 794 by Emperor Kammu when the capital was transferred to Heian-kyō from Nagaoka-kyō.
The shrine became the object of Imperial patronage during the early Heian period. In 965, Emperor Murakami ordered that Imperial messengers were sent to report important events to the guardian kami of Japan. These heihaku were initially presented to 16 shrines including the Hirano Shrine.
The shrine has been the site of a cherry blossom festival annually since 985. The long history of festivals at the Shrine began during the reign of Emperor Kazan, and it has become the oldest regularly held festival in Kyoto.
Having tired slightly of taking photos of shrines, I didn’t really take many at Hirano, hence the rather apparent lack of any decent photos!
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Also, the bananas from the nearby Kyoto Co Op were rather nice!
Related Link: Hirano Shrine