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“Small yet a place to enjoy sightseeing especially during Plum Blossoms”
Review of Yushima Tenmangu

Yushima Tenmangu
Ranked #8 of 249 things to do in Bunkyo
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Attraction details
Owner description: Yushima was founded in 1355 but the main building was re-built in the 1880s. The stunning bronze gate is over 200 years old. In fact this shrine is as well known for its plum garden as it is for its association with the main shrine in Kyushu, which honors a Heian poet, Michizane Sugawara.
Reviewed March 9, 2013

I visited last February 16 (year 2013) to see the Plum Blossoms.Before going,I researched it through the internet just to find out how to get there,and how big the place is.The place is just a 3-5 minute walk from the subway station (in my case,I got off at Yushima station,Tokyo Metro Chiyoda Line).It is also a few meters away from Ochanomizu and Ueno station. It was not as big as I thought but it was enough for me to take some pictures and for sightseeing. The place is for free so no need to prepare for some entrance fees. Yushima Tenjin is famous because a lot of students go there to offer their prayers for passing their examinations (entrance examinations,etc..) especially in the months of February and March (which is the end of academic year here in Japan). Anyone can write their wishes/prayers in a wooden plate called "ema" in Japanese.Unfortunately,it's not for free.You can buy them at 800yen (which is quite expensive).Upon paying the 800yen,they will give you the "ema" and the pen that you'll use in writing (take note that after using the pen,it should be returned on the table where you wrote).The wooden plates are attached with each other (imagine a chain,each of them tied) . There are lot of food stands inside (Yakisoba,green teas,osenbe,chopsticks,"omamori" or lucky charms,etc..) that can be found. Occassionaly,you can see wedding ceremony in the temple (there was,when I was there,LUCKY! ) so you can take pictures as much as you want.Don't worry because unlike other temples where taking pictures of some stuffs are prohibited, you can take as much as you want in Yushima Tenjin. Plum Blossoms were awesome although I think there were only few types of "Ume' or Plum that I saw. Despite that,it was enough for me to take good shots of the plum blossoms...

Thank Ken S
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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Reviewed January 23, 2013

I discovered the shrine while I was walking from my hotel to Ueno Park. It is a small but very important shrine. I first discovered the shrine in 2004.

I looks like a building were very new at that time, because the wood is getting darker and darker since then. But the wood is still not as dark as in other shrines. Therefore I think it is a good spot to visit.

The shrine is famous for is ume tree blossom. At beginning of the school year many students visit the shrine and pray for good exam results.

Thank Seidenpriester
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed May 14, 2012

I was visiting Tokyo in February of 2012 and was eager to attend this festival, which was listed on a Tokyo tourism website. It takes place on weekend days for several weeks in the early spring (Feb/Mar). It is intended to coincide with the bloom of the plum trees, but the bloom was very late in 2012, so no blossoms were open when I visited. I arrived early on Saturday while the vendors were still getting set up. The festival turned out to be much smaller than I expected. Most of the vendors (about 20-25 of them) were selling food. The shrine itself was selling prayer talismans, postcards, and handkerchiefs. There were only 3-5 vendors selling something other than food. The one selling origami projects was particularly good. There were performing arts activities scheduled throughout the day, but the schedule was only available in Japanese. I was directed to one of the festival organizers who spoke english. He was very nice and gave me a lot of tips for tourism in the general area as well as helping me identify which performances I most wanted to see at the festival. There is a procession early in the day with singing, drums, bells, and dancing. This is followed by another display by the members of the procession in the temple courtyard. The highlight of the day is the Taiko drum performance late in the day. There was also a tea ceremony demonstration, but it was hard to see and less elaborate than I expected. This festival is really a local community event. There were VERY few tourists there, and we really stuck out in the crowd. It made me think of the annual festival at my local church (which also runs on weekends for about a month). The seating area for the performances had a capacity of about 70, and most of the people in the audience were clearly family members or friends of the people on stage. Most of the performances appeared to be from local schools or dance studios. In spite of it being a small, local event, I enjoyed it immensely. I felt like I had truly immersed myself in the local culture and gotten off the beaten track of the typical tourist. Everyone who spoke to me was very nice, although they all seemed suprised that I had chosen their festival to attend instead of visiting the usual tourist attractions.

1  Thank BusyTrveller
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed April 18, 2012

was there to enjoy the ume hana season in end Mar, it was really crowdy & the food smell blocked all the plum blossoms sweet smell, people sat under the trees so couldn't really get close to the flowers..so quite sad at this... nevertheless still provide great view near the stair case pathway

Thank meiyih
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed March 28, 2012

Sweet little shrine where everyone goes to pray for success in entrance exams for school and university. Has an annual Kiku (chrysanthemum) festival in November which is fabulous. A short walk from Ueno.

1  Thank PeterTokyo61
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.

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