Fushimi Inari 伏見稲荷大社


       Fushimi Inari Shrine 伏見稲荷大社 is a complex of shrines located on a mountainous area in southeast Kyoto. Fushimi-Inari enshrines the deity Inari, the god of the rice (symbol of wealth/prosperity), commerce and business. The messenger of Inari is the fox. Fox images and statues are located throughout the shrines. They sometimes have a key in their mouth, which represents the key to the rice storehouse.

       A pathway wanders 4 km up the mountain and is dotted with dozens of sub-shrines. The trails are lined with tunnels of more than 10,000 closely-spaced orange torii gates that wind over the hills of Mt. Inari beyond the entrance.

       Each gate has been donated by a local business. The custom to donate a torii started in the the Edo period to make a wish or to thank for a wish that became true. Each torii is replaced every ten years.