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The Captivating Yutoku Inari Shrine

The Yutoku Inari Shrine located in Kashima, Saga, is said to be one of the three largest and most magnificent of the Inari shrines in Japan. These include the most famous Fushimi Inari Shrine in Kyoto which is the headquarters. It is said that there are as many as 3000 Inari shrines across Japan which worship this god of rice, business prosperity and others.

O Inarisama refers to a god who disguised himself as a fox. Foxes were regarded as messengers of this god and if you visit an Inari shrine you’re sure to find statues of foxes.

When you pass through the large Torii gates of the Yutoku Shrine you enter the spacious grounds. Here you will encounter a magnificent building known as the honten, or main shrine.

Yutoku Inari Shrine 01

Photo by aburisamon

Yutoku Inari Shrine and a dog

Photo by bt_sue

Each year three million people are said to visit this popular shrine.

And, as an additional delight, the shrine is lit up at night, offering a very different and beautiful view of the shrine.
Yutoku Inari Shrine

Photo by dekalabi2009

Yutoku Inari Shrine

Photo by hakata_no_hito

Shrines are busiest on the first day of the new year.
The first visit of the year to a shrine is known as hatsumode. This is a deeply rooted custom which we perform each year to pray for a safe year.
Unusually for Saga, it snowed this new year. The shrine enshrouded in snow was a splendid sight.
Snow at Yutoku Inari Shrine

Photo by chj_725

The grounds of the shrine are covered in a variety of vegetation so each season greets you with a different landscape. Because you can enjoy many different views, you will never tire of visiting this fantastic spot.


Yutoku Inari Shrine (祐徳稲荷神社)
Address: 1855 Furueda, Kashima city, Saga
Telephone: 0954-62-2151
Access 1: 10 min taxi ride from Hizen Kashima station (JR Nagasaki line)
Access 2: 1 hour bus ride from Saga Station (Yutoku bus)
Distance to airport: 40 km from Saga Airport. 35 km from Nagasaki Airport.

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