Miyake Hachimangu Shrine

Miyake Hachimangu Shrine 三宅八幡宮

Miyake Hachimangu Shrine is an historic shrine located in the north east of Kyoto in the peaceful neighborhood of Iwakura at the foot of Mt. Hiei.

According to legend, Miyake Hachimangu Shrine was founded by Ono no Imoko (小野 妹子), an important politician and diplomat during the Asuka Period of Japanese history. Ono no Imoko was an envoy to China during the reign of the Empress Suiko and is believed to have delivered a now-famous letter to the Chinese Emperor from Prince Shotoku.

Supposedly after falling ill in Kyushu on his way to or way back from China, the envoy prayed for health to the deity Hachiman at Usa Jingu in present-day Oita Prefecture.

Miyake Hachimangu Shrine, Iwakura, Kyoto.
Miyake Hachimangu Shrine, Kyoto
Miyake Hachimangu Shrine, Iwakura, Kyoto.
Miyake Hachimangu Shrine, Iwakura, Kyoto

Ono no Imoko reportedly recovered so quickly that he built a shrine to Hachiman, who is associated with the mythical Emperor Ojin, when he returned to central Japan.

The Emperor Ojin is the main deity enshrined at Miyake Hachimangu and Hachiman/Ojin's symbolic animal and messenger is the dove which can be seen on statues, noren curtains and ema (votive plaques) around the shrine. Flocks of pigeons are fed at the shrine by devotees.

The Shinto deity enshrined at Miyake Hachimangu Shrine is believed to cure "peevish" children or those afflicted with mushi - spirits that can cause convulsions.

The shrine is particularly popular on September 15, the day of its autumn festival.

Miyake Hachimangu Shrine, Iwakura, Kyoto.
Miyake Hachimangu Shrine, Kyoto
Miyake Hachimangu Shrine, Kyoto.
Torii Gate & Pigeon Statue, Miyake Hachimangu Shrine, Kyoto

Miyake Hachimangu Shrine Access - how to get to Miyake Hachimangu Shrine in Kyoto

Miyake Hachimangu Shrine
Kamitakano Miyake-cho
Sakyo-ku, Kyoto
Tel: 075 781 5003
Hours: 6am-6pm
Admission: Free.

Take an Eiden train from Demachiyanagi Station to Hachiman-mae Station and then a short walk. Alternatively take a Kyoto bus #21 or #23 from Shijo Kawaramachi Station or #24 from Kokusaikaikan on the Kyoto subway to the Hachiman-mae stop.

From Kyoto Station take a Kyoto subway to Kokusaikaikan and then a #24 Kyoto bus which goes as far as Jissoin Temple after the Hachiman-mae stop.

A trip to Miyake Hachimangu can be combined with visits to nearby Jissoin and the historically important Old Secluded Residence of Iwakura Tomomi.

Miyake Hachimangu Shrine, Iwakura, Kyoto.
Ema votive plaque with doves, Miyake Hachimangu Shrine, Iwakura, Kyoto

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