Accessed from a raised wooden walkway accessed from behind Atago Green Hills building or via an outdoor glass elevator. Atago-jinja shrine is the closest Shinto shrine to our home in Tokyo. Shinto (神道) is the indigenous relegion to Japan and the Japanese people. LIke many temples and shrines in Tokyo I find Atago shrine an escape from the urban jungle - peaceful and quiet - well worth a visit if in the area.
The shrine is located on Atago hill - the highest land point in Tokyo's 26 wards. The shrine was erected to protect residents from fire, since its high position was well suited to watch for fires (clearly before the surrounding skyscrapers were built! Accordingly, the main Shinto god worshipped here is the fire god - Homusubi n Mikito
The stairs leading to the shrine are also famous. A young smurai, Magaki Heiko, rode his horse up the very steep steps and brought back a twig of plum blossom from the top of Atago yama mountain. Because of this he was known as Japan's great master of horse riding and the stone steps were named 'Shusse no Ishidan' (Stone Steps of Success in Life)
The plum tree from which Heikuro broke off a twig, still remains in the shrine.
> Closest subway station - Kamiyacho (Hibiya line) or Onarimon (Mita line)
> Of interest close by - Tokyo Tower, Zojo-ji temple, Toranomon Hills, Seisho-ji.
> Top Tip: Climb the stairs if you can - tough work but helps understand why this is the highest land point in Tokyo
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