Meiji Shrine or popularly known as Meiji-Jingu is one of the most important Shinto Shrine in Tokyo, Japan. It is Japan’s most important shrine and is the most visited religious sites. On a typical day, you can notice there would be over a million visitors and this religious site is hugely popular for weddings. The religious site is located in Shibuya and is close to Tokyo Times Square, Harajuku Cosplay and Omotesando ‘Fifth Avenue’ Shopping. There is lush greenery located near to the temple which is a perfect place to stroll and away from the buzz that Tokyo Times Square offers.
The shrine is dedicated to spirits of Emperor Meiji and Empress Shoken. The construction of the temple began after the Emperor passes away, starting in 1915 the temple has been constructed under Ito Chuta. Completed in the year 1921 and the grounds officially finished in 1926 the temple is a designated one of Kanpei-Taisha which means it took the first rank in government supported shrines. Meiji emperor period is one of the significant periods in the history of Japan as there was rapid industrialization happening in the Island nation and Emperor Meiji who was 15 years during the period took up the rule and became the symbol of change.
Upon the entrance, you can notice a huge gate called torii. Once you enter this region you cannot miss having a glimpse of this gate. And upon entering you might notice a grand shrine building. You can notice the front of the shrine, however. The original building was destroyed during WWII. The restoration of the shrine was raised by the public fund and was completed in the year 1958. The shrine mainly is composed of 2 major areas called Naien and Gaien.
a) Naien: It is the inner precinct located is located at the centre of the shrine and it includes treasure house that has articles of Emperor and Empress. Built-in Azekurazukuri style. This is a beautiful treasure house which you can explore.
b) Gaien: The outer precinct of the Meiji-Jingu includes Meiji Memorial Picture Gallery which has a collection of 80 large murals illustrative of the events in the lives of the Emperor and his consort, Meiji Memorial Hall which back then was used by government meetings however now it is used for Shinto Weddings along with meeting rooms and restaurant services.
Speaking of weddings that happen here, Meiji-Jingu is an important place for Shinto Weddings, you can notice many weddings happen here. The surrounding is also lush green with evergreen trees. Next to the forest is the inner garden which started out as a clan garden in the Edo Period. It was the garden of Daimyō Katō Kiyomasa of Kumamoto. This inner garden contains a tea house, a fishing stand and the iris garden which the Meiji Emperor has designed by himself.
There is no entrance fee to enter the shrine region but if you want to enter the garden 5US$.