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“Way out of the way.” 4 of 5 stars
Review of Ise Shrine (Ise Jingu)

Ise Shrine (Ise Jingu)
Ise 516-0023 , Mie Prefecture
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Ranked #1 of 35 Attractions in Ise
4.5 of 5 stars 986 Reviews
Type: Religious Sites, Cultural
Attraction details
Baltimore, Maryland, United States
Contributor
15 reviews 15 reviews
6 attraction reviews
Reviews in 10 cities Reviews in 10 cities
11 helpful votes 11 helpful votes
“Way out of the way.”
4 of 5 stars Reviewed May 1, 2013

The shrine is not accessible. Only visible from behind one of its many fences. Its currently in a 20 year reconstruction phase. The new temporary shrines are not visible during this process. There are canopies covering the work. The real attraction for a gaijin is the river walk and shop filled street leading up to the shrine. Lots of good food to be had. Do yourself a favor and get some grilled shellfish. There are two stands that I saw and they have many different types to choose from. Souvenirs are found better elsewhere though. Was a long drive from Gifu and I most likely wouldn't do it again.

Visited May 2013
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Toronto
Senior Contributor
22 reviews 22 reviews
11 attraction reviews
Reviews in 9 cities Reviews in 9 cities
18 helpful votes 18 helpful votes
“Spiritual and Refreshing”
5 of 5 stars Reviewed April 23, 2013

I was nicely surprised by how sacred, peaceful and refreshing both the inner (Naiku) and outer (Geku) shrines felt. While both inner and out shrines can be visited in one day we opted to visit the Naiku on one day and Geku the following day. 2013 is the year they are changing the shrines (they alternate them every 20 years - building a new shrine and tearing down the old) so this is the perfect year if you want to see both shrines still standing.

Walking through the massive tori is a wonderful feeling (you might consider taking your hat off when you do this to show respect, likewise Japanese bow before entering and when leaving). The massive trees are stunning in size and stature and you cannot help but feel this is a sacred place. Our guide (from the shrine) carefully instructed me on how to wash my hands and mouth properly before entering each shrine, and how to bow when entering and leaving through the main tori which only added to a feeling of specialness and inclusion. Out of respect some shrines and areas of prayer should not be photographed, and likewise eating and drinking is something that should be done outside the shrines. However, the Japanese are not super serious when visiting this shrine - it's a visit they make to pay respect but it's not taken too too seriously so there is a nice feeling to the whole experience.

Visited April 2013
Was this review helpful? Yes 4
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Canberra
Top Contributor
170 reviews 170 reviews
53 attraction reviews
Reviews in 89 cities Reviews in 89 cities
127 helpful votes 127 helpful votes
“Not to be missed”
5 of 5 stars Reviewed April 19, 2013

The inner (Naiku) and outer (Geku) Shinto shrines are spectacular. Both set amongst towering cedars, these structures are nearing the end of their 20 year cycle and the new Shrines are due to be revealed in October 2013. Not really revealed to the public - we can only really look over the high fences at the roof lines of the main buildings

Visited April 2013
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This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Bergamo, Italy
Top Contributor
172 reviews 172 reviews
28 attraction reviews
Reviews in 81 cities Reviews in 81 cities
90 helpful votes 90 helpful votes
“The real spirit of Japan”
5 of 5 stars Reviewed April 9, 2013

If you want to touch the real spirit of Kapan and its culture you should visit that Shrine. Total respect for Nature and its power is really impressive and the Shrine itself is completely rebuilt every 20 years to pass to future generation the knowledge of ancient building tecnique and religious philosopy....really impressive!

Visited March 2013
Was this review helpful? Yes 5
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Kansas City, Missouri
Top Contributor
60 reviews 60 reviews
36 attraction reviews
Reviews in 23 cities Reviews in 23 cities
42 helpful votes 42 helpful votes
“Perhaps a biased review, due to my love of shrines”
5 of 5 stars Reviewed March 21, 2013

If you are they typical traveler with not much knowledge on shrines (same situation with cathedrals in Europe), it might be 'just another shrine' to you besides the fact that is it placed in an incredibly tranquil and beautiful forest. I, on the other hand, really enjoyed it since I was studying it anyway. It's one of the most sacred shrines in Japan (with Izumo Shrine) and you can tell: I was basically the only tourist that I could see. Everyone else was there I'm presuming as a pilgrimage, and they were all Japanese. It is clearly a sacred place. When I went, the new shrine (build next to the old one every 20 years) was in the process of construction, so it was interesting to see the two next to each other. It has a sacred, quiet feel, so I would necessarily recommend bringing children or immature people when others are trying to pray.

I think you should definitely go if you're good with the train and bus systems (because I'm not kidding when I say it's in the smack dab middle of desolate Japan), and want to enjoy a full day of traversing the countryside. Luckily, Meoto Iwa (Wedded Rocks) are relatively near by bus, as is a nice little village area for shopping/touristy things.
!!!! One more thing-- the bus taking you around the shrine and nearby areas stops around 6pm...so you better make sure you leave before then..or else you'll be stuck wandering around in the rain with no one to help like I did. FUN!

Visited June 2012
Was this review helpful? Yes 4
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