ise, mie perfecture

2013 was a special year for Ise, a city located on the Shima Peninsula in Mie Perfecture.

To be more precise, it was special for IseJingu, the Grand Shrine of Ise.
Every 20 years the Naiku and Genku Shrines (part of the big complex of Jingu Shrine), and the Uji Brigde, are rebuilt as part of the Shinto belief, "nothing lasts, nothing is finished and nothing is perfect".
This also embodies the goal of passing to the next generations the traditional building techniques.

By the time we visited the Shrine, it was just one week before the grand ceremony, and what I witnessed there, was pure devotion!
There were thousands of people walking in silence to offer their prayers to the divine. 
The Shrine itself is a simple structure, without ornaments, showing how sometimes "less is more", but certainly full of beauty and spirituality!

We did our walk through the Shrine, amazed by the silence of a place full of people, and as you can imagine you get smitten by the environment!

Another beautiful and historical place to visit in the area, before or after the visit to the Shrine, is Oharaimachi. Almost 1km long, this is a street with shops, cafes and restaurants that recreate the Edo Period.

It’s a beautiful place to stroll and taste some Japanese specialities, like the sweets made of mochi rice and red bean paste, called akafuko meaning "red happiness".

This was one of my last trips in Japan, and I must say, the one that I enjoyed the most!
I truly recommend a visit to Ise to all who pass through Japan. 

Location: Ise, Mie Perfecture

Out&About Tokyo