Usa Jingu Shrine

The oldest of all Hachiman shrines in Japan

By Ekaterina Bespyatova    - 1 min read

One of the oldest and most important shrines in Japan, Usa Hachimangū, is dedicated to Hachiman, the god of warriors. Throughout history this deity has received much attention from the samurai class, the Imperial Family and, later, the common people. Now there are about 44,000 Hachiman shrines throughout Japan, with Usa Hachimangū, founded in the 8th century, being the oldest of them all (although present buildings date from the mid-19th century).

The shrine sits on spacious, forested grounds with numerous red torii gates hiding beneath the tree canopy (there’s quite some distance between the very first big entrance gate and the main shrine gate). There’s a picturesque lotus pond, various smaller structures, and the vibrant red-colored main shrine, a feast for the eyes. I spent one pleasant and leisurely hour here with my camera.

The shrine didn’t feel crowded (I visited on a weekday), but there were a couple of tourist buses with large groups of Japanese pilgrims, attesting to the popularity of this place.

Getting there

Ten minute drive from JR Usa Station.

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Ekaterina Bespyatova

Ekaterina Bespyatova @ekaterina.bespyatova

My name is Ekaterina and I enjoy looking at the world through my camera’s viewfinder. I travel a lot and capture what I find beautiful – in nature, culture, people. Japan is a place I have a special connection with – I’ve spent 7 years living in Tokyo and I’ve travelled across the country extensively, often to remote and less known locations. I have a large collection of photos from years of my Japan travels that I hope to eventually put online. And that collection constantly grows, because I always go back – there’s so much yet to discover. ​Check out my travel blog Amenohi Travels to see more. ​*** ​Здравствуйте, меня зовут Екатерина, и я люблю смотреть на мир через объектив фотоаппарата. Я много путешествую и снимаю то, что мне кажется красивым - природу, людей, созданное людьми. ​С Японией у меня давняя и глубокая связь. Я прожила 7 лет в Токио, объездила всю страну из конца в конец и регулярно возвращаюсь за новыми впечатлениями. За годы путешествий по Японии у меня скопилась большая коллекция фотографий, которые я планирую постепенно сделать доступными онлайн. Своими впечатлениями от поездок я делюсь здесь - а также на страницах своего сайта Amenohi Travels.