Tuesday, 20 May 2014

Senso-ji Temple, Tokyo

I don't know about you, but when I think of Japan I always imagine red, black and gold everywhere, temples, samuri, fish and tradition.
Second day here I got to go to a temple.

Senso-ji (or Asakusa Temple) greets you with a sprawling Thunder Gate, and then it's on to a street filled with shops. From there it's on to one of the oldest, biggest temples in the world.

The temple though is only half the fun.

During the walk over from the train you get an epic view of the Sky Tree.
(And whatever that squiggly, spermy thing is.)

And you definitely cannot miss the entrance of this place.
Just follow the crowds of people to the main gate.

When you see the lantern, make sure you take a peak underneath.
The beauty really is in the details.

The moment you pass through the gate the shopping begins. 
Every Japanese-like item you can think of.

There's a mini temple on the way down one of the side streets, so if you have some time go check it out.
It's a lot quieter than the main temple.

Details, details, details.

I firmly believe food is one of the main components of a country's culture, so I made sure to try one of everything.
These curry puffs were especially tasty.

And finally, when you've just about forgotten the main reason you came here in the first place the shops end and give way to a large open courtyard.

Make sure to peak under the black and gold lanterns as well.
Such beautiful, delicate architecture.

If you know Japanese you can get a fortune at a little booth.
Depending on whether it's good or bad you tie it onto the line for it either to come or not come true.

Tradition also dictates that you cleanse yourself before approaching the temple where gods live.
This means taking the little pot and filling it with water from the fountain and using it to wash your hands.
You should also rinse your mouth, but if you do that please don't spit it out into the fountain, there's a drain just under your feet.

More fortune reading inside the temple!!

When inside you clap your hands to get the attention of the gods, throw some coins in and pray for what you wish.

Because there are so many little side streets with shops you can take a whole different route back.

This was one of my favorite things I saw.
Puffer fish made into lights!

 We spent almost all day walking around and by the time we got out the moon had already begun to rise.

Next post is about food.
Amazing, delicious, Japanese food.
Are you thinking sushi?
Good, me too.

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