mit_souko (mit_souko) wrote,

Haruna Jinja

Haruna Jinja was first built in 586. Obviously the shrines have been repaired, modified, and probably at least partially rebuilt at times. But the consensus is on the great age of the place. Despite it being mid November and a weekday, there was a fair number of people visiting. It is about an hour from Takasaki station by bus. You climb a road from the bus stop, and come upon the ancient monumental gate:

the gate

After that, you start climbing: Haruna Jinja, in the Shinto tradition, is up in the mountain. The road, though, is not hard, and you do not encounter stairs till close to the end. It is quite nice to walk through the forest. There are in particular some giant cedar trees near the shrine.
the road up
There is the occasional Buddha to encourage you
smiling buddha
or Kannon:
Then you get to the stairs:
small shrine on the way up
More stairs
more stairs
Then you get to the main buildings:
Main shrine, Haruna jinja
another shrine, Haruna
small shrine, with rocks and grotto
And finally the main one:
the last stairs...
My favorite statue [looks like a tengu, doesn't he?]
Most of the leaves had fallen, but there remained one flaming maple:
Haruna flaming tree

It was an enjoyable excursion. I then returned to Tagasaki. I left the next day, escaping the cold of Gunma for the [relative] warmth of Kansai in Kyoto.

Please come visit again, I will soon post my pictures of Kyoto!

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