One of the most photographed places in Japan, this is a clear and spectacular example of the fusion of nature with man’s handy work. The warrior chief Taira no Kivomori, built the first Torii in the 12th century. The current structure (constructed in 1875) measures about 16 metres in height and has a four-pillar structure for stability.
Located on the coast of Sanyo, the island of Miyajima is home to the famous “Torii” built in the sea, proclaiming the sacredness of the island. Neither births nor deaths (or funerals) are allowed to take place here…so don’t even think about suddenly taking a turn for the worse here!
The island is full of tame deer. They’re completely accustomed to humans, but if you’re not careful they could easily eat your guidebook!
Beyond the grand Torii, you’ll find the Itsukushima Shrine and Japans oldest noh stage. When the tide comes in, the buildings are reflected in the sea.
I was lucky enough to come across a Shintoist wedding. The stunning aesthetic of the ceremony added to the already beautiful surroundings.
The maple leave valley (Momijidani Park) can be seen in the hills behind the shrine. If you take the cable car to the very top the reward is a spectacular view of the sea. If you ever have the privilege to visit Japan, don’t miss this amazing spot.