Kifune-jinja Shrine

A Memorable Shrine in a Dreamy Village

In the northern mountains of Kyoto lies the enchanting village of Kibune. Known for its picturesque landscapes, Kibune is a hidden gem that offers a tranquil escape from the bustling city life. One of the village’s most notable attractions is the Kifune-jinja Shrine, a sacred place that holds a special place in the hearts of both locals and visitors alike.

How to Get There

Getting to Kibune is relatively easy. The shrine is accessible by train and then by bus or on foot. If you’re coming from Kyoto, you can take the Keihan Line to Demachiyanagi Station and transfer to the Eizan Dentetsu Line. From there, you can get off at Kibune-guchi Station. It’s a 30-minute walk up the road to Kibune from the station, or you can take one of the buses that run from the station to the village. Whichever mode of transportation you choose, the journey to Kibune is as scenic as the destination itself.

When to Go

The best times to visit Kibune are in August and autumn. August is ideal because the summer heat is not as intense in the mountains and the surrounding forests provide ample shade. Autumn, on the other hand, is breathtaking as the maple trees turn vibrant shades of red, orange, and yellow, creating a stunning backdrop for the shrine. Whether you prefer the coolness of August or the vibrant colors of autumn, Kibune is a delight to visit year-round.

The Legend of the Water Goddess

Kifune-jinja Shrine is renowned for its stunning stone steps that lead up to it, adorned with red lanterns on both sides. The shrine is dedicated to the god of water and holds a significant place in Japanese mythology. According to legend, a goddess arrived in Kibune on a yellow boat, and the shrine marks the spot where she finally landed. The original shrine, called Okunomiya, is located a kilometer away up the road. Here, you can see large stones said to be covering the remains of the goddess’s yellow boat. It’s a mystical and enchanting tale that adds to the allure of Kifune-jinja Shrine.

Prayers for Business Prosperity and Water Divination

Kifune-jinja Shrine is not only a place of worship but also a destination for those seeking business prosperity. Many people in the food industry visit the shrine to pray for success in their endeavors. One of the unique features of the shrine is the omikuji, or paper fortune, that is available for purchase. For 200 yen, you can buy a blank piece of paper and float it on the water of the shrine’s fountain. As the paper unfolds, your fortune is revealed, offering guidance and insight into your future. It’s a fascinating ritual that adds a touch of mysticism to the shrine’s atmosphere.

Hike the Mountain

For nature enthusiasts and adventure seekers, Kibune offers a delightful hiking trail that connects the village with Kurama, a neighboring village on the other side of the mountain. The trail is steep in some areas but is well-maintained with steps and handrails for safety. Starting your hike in Kibune and finishing in Kurama allows you to fully immerse yourself in the beauty of the surrounding forests and mountains. The stunning vistas and serene atmosphere make the hike a memorable experience for all.

Dine like the Locals

Aside from its natural beauty and sacred sites, Kibune is also known for its unique dining experience. Many restaurants in the village offer kawadoko, or decks, that overlook the rushing Kibune River below. These decks provide a perfect setting to enjoy a traditional Japanese kaiseki dinner while being surrounded by the soothing sounds of the river. The food served in these restaurants is remarkably fresh, with some fish even caught from the very river beneath you. To ensure a memorable dining experience, it is recommended to make a reservation in advance, as these meals usually start at 3,000 yen per person.

Kibune is a village that truly captures the essence of traditional japan. Its charming atmosphere, rich history, and natural beauty make it a must-visit destination for anyone seeking an authentic cultural experience. Whether you’re exploring the sacred Kifune-jinja Shrine, hiking through the picturesque mountains, or indulging in a traditional meal by the river, Kibune offers a unique and unforgettable journey that will leave a lasting impression. So, pack your bags and embark on a memorable adventure to this dreamy village in the northern mountains of Kyoto.

Address And Maps Location:

180 Kuramakibune-cho, Sakyo-ku, Kyoto-shi, Kyoto-fu

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