Photo Friday: Kasuga Taisha Nara Shrine

I’m not big on shrines in Japan because I overdid it in Kyoto, but the Kasuga Taisha shrine (春日大社) in Nara (奈良) is one of my favorites for its gorgeous lanterns and cute heart-shaped ema (絵馬). For some reason I’m also a big fan of moss, I get excited to see stone things covered in moss (weirdo). I visited back in 2010 but never posted photos. They’re so beautiful I don’t know why I waited.

Apparently “During the festivals of Setsubun Mantoro (February 2–4) and Obon Mantoro (August 14–15), the thousands shrine lanterns of Kasuga-taisha are all lit at once.” – (wiki). I really want to see that! It must be so beautiful!



  1. July 6, 2012 / 12:46 pm

    Ooh, I went there a couple times too, even for some weird ass matsuri, one of the oldest remembered matsuri in whole Japan with out professor, but I forgot what it was about, but there was a lot of burning things and crazy misticism. xD Other than that, the shrine is lovely! :D

    And I also get excited by moss :D

    • Mitsu
      July 10, 2012 / 9:51 am

      hahahaha that sounds great actually! I dig the whole more out there Shinto ceremonies :) I just like religious ceremonies (even though I’m not) :)
      YAY another moss lover :):)

    • Mitsu
      July 10, 2012 / 9:50 am


  2. July 6, 2012 / 1:44 pm

    I would love to go there <3

    • Mitsu
      July 10, 2012 / 9:50 am

      I definitely recommend it! Nara’s a great day visit from Kyoto or Osaka :)

  3. July 6, 2012 / 1:59 pm

    Beautiful pictures! You are right, this shrine seems to be special. And most of the shrines I saw in Kyoto were pretty, but I liked others more too. My favourite shrine is one in the mountains of Nagano and it was just breath-taking.

    One of the festival-days appears to be my bday. Maybe I will take the opportunity and visit this shrine to see all the laterns lit at once at that special day…

    • Mitsu
      July 10, 2012 / 9:49 am

      I went to one in Nagano but I wasn’t bowled over. Maybe it was the wrong time of year or the wrong one?

      That would be a great day to celebrate a birthday :)

  4. July 6, 2012 / 3:39 pm

    Omg the heart thingy is a nice twist!!

    • Mitsu
      July 10, 2012 / 9:47 am

      Isn’t it sweet! Since it was near my anniversary I was happy to be there with my man and make a relationship wish ema :)

  5. July 6, 2012 / 6:35 pm

    Kasuga Taisha Shrine is such a beautiful place and Nara’s most famous shrine. Did you know that it is dedicated to the deity responsible for the protection of the city of Nara.

    Japan Australia

    • Mitsu
      July 10, 2012 / 9:47 am

      Yup! I remember that plaque outside. Nara should be well protected then :)

  6. July 6, 2012 / 11:57 pm

    Kasuga Taisha is so beautiful, I was there once with a friend from Kyoto and I absolutely loved it. It must be amazing to see all the pretty lanterns being lit during matsuri season :D

    • Mitsu
      July 10, 2012 / 9:45 am

      Agreed! I would like to try to make it back there some year! :)

  7. July 9, 2012 / 11:42 pm

    I totally understand what you mean about moss. I love moss covered things. This shrine is absolutely beautifulm thank you for the lovely pictures :]

    • Mitsu
      July 10, 2012 / 9:43 am

      Yay! Another moss lover! Happy to share, it still ranks high on my shrine list even after visiting several after that :)

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