During an off day in Hiroshima we scampered off to Itsukushima Shrine on Miyajima island. The tori of the shrine was one of the first images of Japan that I remember, and it has been on my list of places of see in Japan.
We took a boat to the island and it was even more than I expected. On the walk towards the shrine there were cute little street lined with stores and scrumptious food.
Miyajima is also home to the world’s largest wooden spoon. I wasn’t prepared to come across something so stunning. I needed a moment to take it all in.
Deer also inhabit the island, and they are extremely used to people. I was able to have a moment with one and Andrew tried to use his powers of animal communication. Apparently its a power that comes with being a vegetarian. One got a little too close though, and wanted to check out the contents of my purse.
Then we got to see the famous gate. The gate is part of the Itsukushima Shrine, and was initially built so people could go through the gate before even setting food on the island. The island was once considered too sacred for common people to visit, and all boats had to pass through the gate to get to the island. Over time the purity has been more of a tourist destination. However the inhabitants of the island go to great lengths to prevent deaths and births from occurring on the island and burials are strictly forbidden. During low tide you can walk through the gate for good fortune, but since it was a) high tide b) too cold to swim, we chose to enjoy the beauty of the tori from the shore.