Haneda Shrine

History and tradition close to Haneda Airport

By Sleiman Azizi    - 2 min read

A bit of time on my hands before flying out of Tokyo, I took a short stroll from my hotel and headed off to visit nearby Haneda Shrine. After an enjoyable sojourn at Haginaka Park, Haneda Shrine turned out to be quite the pleasant Tokyo shrine.

Bordered along the south by the Tama River as it flows into Tokyo Bay, the Honhaneda district sits right by Haneda Airport. Clean, and serviceable, the area's main claim to fame is Haneda Shrine. Though quiet during the time of my visit, this Shinto shrine is quite popular for travellers and business people seeking assurances in air safety.

Torii gate entrance to the shrine
Torii gate entrance to the shrine

The shrine is very well maintained and one of the highlights of a visit here most certainly has to be the mikoshi portable shrine. Sitting in its storeroom, the glass doors allow a clear view of the shrine when it is not in use and all of its remarkable detail is quite evident. Come the final weekend of July, the mikoshi is brought out and paraded annually through crowds of tens of thousands during the famous Haneda Festival.

Hard to see in the photo but in person the mikoshi portable shrine is very beautiful
Hard to see in the photo but in person the mikoshi portable shrine is very beautiful

Established some eight hundred years ago during the Kamakura era, the shrine's deities were enshrined by wealthy lords while during the Edo period, the Tokugawa shoguns made regular visits to offer their respects. The shrine is also home to a fujizaka. Sitting behind the shrine's main hall, fujizaka can be found all over Tokyo and are relics from an Edo-period Mt. Fuji cult. Several metres high, fujizaka feature rocks sourced from the real Mt. Fuji and serve as spiritual substitutes for pilgrims unable to make the ascent of the real Mt. Fuji.

Simple, well maintained, and loaded with history and tradition, Haneda Shrine is an easy visit, being only a few minutes from Haneda Airport.

Getting there

Take the Keikyu Airport Line to Otorii Station. The shrine is an easy 8-minute walk from the West Exit.

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Sleiman Azizi

Sleiman Azizi @sleiman.azizi

A Japanese Permanent Resident, I have over 300 published articles on Japan as well as 5 English language books written in a traditional Japanese style. I happen enjoy writing. Funny that...I'm also the Regional Partner for Tokyo, Japan's never ending capital, so if you've anything to say about Tokyo - or Japan in general - don't be shy and contact with me via sleiman.azizi@japantravel.com

Join the discussion

Lynda Hogan 3 weeks ago
I love the glass doors allowing a peak at anytime.
Sleiman Azizi Author 3 weeks ago
I was quite impressed by it.
Sherilyn Siy 3 weeks ago
800 years ago.... wow. I wonder what people prayed for centuries before the airport was built.
Sleiman Azizi Author 3 weeks ago
Health Sherilyn, health.
Kim B 3 weeks ago
A shrine to pray for safe travels is genius near an airport!
Sleiman Azizi Author 3 weeks ago
It goes without saying, right?