Yesterday and today, at Fushimi Inari Taisha (伏見稲荷大社), the annual Motomiya-sai Matsuri was held. This is a big event for the head shrine of Inari, because representatives from all Inari shrines in Japan come here to celebrate this Obon (お盆) matsuri. Not only the representatives but people from all over Japan come here to celebrate and pray. The shrine is illuminated at night, even all the way up the mountain. One of the highlights of the Motomiya-sai, is when a Shinto priest lights the first stone lantern. This is followed by another 1.000 Tōrō (stone lanters-燈籠) to be lit on Inari Mountain tonight. And the beginning of the fun for the many people that came last night. Meanwhile in the parking lot a booth was set up and there was singing and dancing to the beat of a drum. Typical Obon (お盆) dancing, ladies clad in summer kimonos started off to the sound of the catching tunes of a drum, and I suppose, that after everyone had enough sake, many people will join in and have a blast. For the more daring a trip to the top of this mystical mountain, lit by the stone lanterns and festive decorations, is a must. I am not saying its spooky, but then, it's no fun if it's not. All by all this is quite an event and I am glad I went, even though it was quite hot and humid. I should not forget to mention that there where many banners expressing gratitude that Fushimi Inari Taisha was chosen by “Trip Adviser” as the most popular spot in Japan! To underscore this, a friend’s daughter asked me where the spooky shrine was and how to get there. This young teen, although Japanese, lives in Lebanon and was on a visit to Kyoto. What more need I say…..
Category:Travel and Places
Keywords:Fushimi Inari Taisha, Japan, Kyoto, Motomiya-sai, Shinto, Yoi-miya, matsuri, 伏見稲荷大社, 宵宮祭, 本宮祭