Amanotanagao Shrine (あまのたながおじんじゃ)

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Japanese shrines are positioned within a hierarchy. The highest-ranking ones in each region are called ichi-no-miya, which means “first shrine,” and these have protected their respective sacred areas for over 1,000 years. One such ichi-no-miya shrine, out of the 286 located across the country, is this Ama-no-Tanagao Shrine. It was built in 811 and selected in 927 as one of the important shrines that the country should venerate. 
Climbing up 137 moss-covered stone steps will bring you to the shrine pavilion at the top of the hill. Some ornaments remain inside the shrine, giving you a glimpse of its former glory. A seated stone figure called the Miroku Nyorai Zazō was excavated from the grounds and has a history dating back 1,070 years. Today, it is designated a National Treasure of Japan and the third oldest stone statue in the country.

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Address 811-5117 長崎県壱岐市郷ノ浦町田中触730
Parking Parking lot available
Access 10 minutes by car from Gonoura Port
Website Tripadvisor

This shrine fell into disuse and its whereabouts became unknown when the Mongolian army invaded Japan twice, in 1274 and 1281. Later, in the latter half of the 17th century during the early Edo period, a Shinto scholar named Tachibana Mitsuyoshi investigated and identified the current location of Ama-no-Tanagao Shrine, based on the place name.
Many shrines were merged here in 1965, which means that multiple gods are enshrined together today, and collectively, they bestow blessings to prayers for bountiful harvest, good fortune, safe births, harmonious marriages, and longevity.


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