Nikko Toshogu Shrine
Nikko Toshogu is a Shinto shrine, built in 1617 and dedicated to the founder of the Tokugawa Shogunate, Ieyasu Tokugawa. The shrine has been registered as a World Heritage Site.
The structure is decorated with lacquer and rich coloring, and many of the pillars feature carvings and sculptures. These are not just aesthetic designs, but represent faith as well as scholarship and ideologies.
The various wooden carvings of animals represent peace.
Yomeimon, one of Japan’s most beautiful and iconic gates, is covered in artistic sculptures that one can spend all day looking at, earning it the nickname “Higurashi Mikado,” or “Twilight Gate.”
A dragon is depicted on the ceiling of Yakushido Hall, and if you clap your hands beneath their heads the sound is almost as if the dragons are crying. Because of this, they are sometimes called the Crying Dragon.
The carving of three monkeys at the shrine, hiding their eyes, mouth, and ears, respectively, represents the teachings that children should not look at, speak of, or hear evil or bad things.
Also, the Toshogu Museum of Art, which requires an admission fee, exists on the shrine’s grounds and offers the following attractions.
The Toshogu Treasure Museum: The museum has on display a variety of artifacts, such as Ieyasu Tokugawa’s cherished personal items, offerings from the Imperial Court, shogunate families, and feudal lords, as well as ritual items.
The Toshogu Museum of Art: The Museum of Art has around 100 works of art on display, including cedar doors and sliding screens from the former shrine office. Visitors can directly appreciate the masterful works created by Japanese artists.
Basic information on Nikko Toshogu Shrine
Nikko Toshogu Shrine
- 2301 Sannai, Nikko-city, Tochigi
- About 10 minutes by taxi from the JR Nikko Station, Tobu Nikko Station.
- April-October 8:00-17:00. November-March 8:00-16:00
- Open every day
[Nikko Toshogu-Only Tickets] High school students and older 1300 yen. Elementary and junior high students 450 yen.
[Set Tickets (Toshogu Admission Ticket and Treasure Museum Admission Ticket)] High school students and older 2100 yen. Elementary and junior high students 770 yen.
[Treasure Museum Admission Tickets] High school students and older 1000 yen. Elementary and junior high students 400 yen.
[Toshogu Museum of Art Admission Tickets] Adults 800 yen. High school students and older 600 yen. Elementary and junior high students 400 yen.