Shrines & Temples
Musashi Ichinomiya Hikawa-jinja Shrine
Come visit a key piece of shrine history in Japan! The city name Omiya, is actually derived from the presence of this very old and famous shrine, it’s full name being Musashi Ichinomiya Hikawa Jinja. This is one of the oldest and most significant shrines in the Kanto region, with an impressive history of over 2,000 years! That even tops the most popular shrines in Kyoto!
While you won’t be journeying through the depths of forests like some shrines, you can still take a small pilgrimage from Saitama Shintoshin station to the shrine itself. The walkway is beautiful under the cover of trees and makes for a nice walk before reaching the main shrine area. It’s about 2 kilometers, just enough to work up a good appetite for some dango rice cake treats along the way, made by a locally-loved shop.
The long path ends at an iconic red bridge that crosses a pond into the main shrine area. Tall trees grow from within the dirt and gravel ground of the shrine, making the history more palpable than other shrines that have been renovated extensively. Whether you want to do the typical Shinto prayer and toss some coins in the donation box, or just stand back and enjoy the craftsmanship and atmosphere of the shrine, this is a slice of history easily available just outside of Tokyo.
Very popular for the locals during seasonal events, this shrine is a central part of Omiya’s history and culture. While the bustling festival atmosphere during the new year or summer seasons is a thrill, the quiet serenity of low-traffic seasons and weekdays makes for a more mystical experience. Be sure to pick up a good luck charm for a souvenir from one the most historic shrines around.
1-407 Takahana-cho, Omiya Ward, Saitama, 330-0803
Spring and fall seasons (March, April, September, October) 5:30 a.m.-5:30 p.m.
Summer season (May-August) 5:00 a.m.-6:00 p.m.
Winter season (November-February) 6:00 a.m.-5:00 p.m.
Shrine ceremonies planned 9:00 a.m.-4:00 p.m., every 30 minutes