Kumanokotai Shrine was one of the places that we visited in December. It is located on the border line of Nagano and Gunma prefecture. It was about a half an hour drive from Karuizawa up the mountain road.
This was a very unique shrine, On the Nagano side shrine is called KumanoKotai Shrine, and Gunma side is called Kumano Shrine. Here is enshrined the Holly sprits of Kumano.
It was a short trek to the shrine but the steps were quite steep. Luckily Tiger girl was more then willing to climb up the flight of stairs and I didn’t need to carry her.
I love the design of the lanterns that were aligning the staircase. I’m sure it would certainly make the path look really cozy at night.
At the top of the staircase we were saw these two buildings. One of the buildings was a hall while the other one housed the God- Izanami no Mikoto, Yamatotakeru no Mikoto
Like most Japanese shrines there was a board where one can ask favours from the GODs. You need to purchase the plague or special offering paper and write your wish on it before attaching it to the board. On the adjourning wall there were many plagues with the name of various Japanese households who have donated to the shrine.
Besides penning down your wishes you could also purchase tailsmans for good luck, good marriage, kids studies etc. Unfortunately the shop was closed when we visited the place so I couldn’t see how they really looked like.
Have you visited a Shrine before?