Nov 11, 2018 Attraction Miyajima

Get to Know Miyajima’s True Cultural Beauty at GojūNotō and SenjōKaku Shrine

#Attraction ,#Historical Site ,#Photogenic


There are many famous and historic temples and structures on the island of Miyajima, but few draw the eye so much as does Gojūnotō, its form towering above its surroundings.

Its vivid red visage paints a beautiful picture from afar, and as you draw closer its beauty only becomes more apparent.

Today I’d like to talk to you about some information regarding Gojūnotō, including one of the best spots to take photos, as well as additional information on the nearby Senjōkaku Shrine.

The Beautiful Tower of Miyajima, Gojūnotō

Built in 1407, Gojūnotō stands with Itsukushima Shrine as one of the most famous symbols of Miyajima.

Looking closely, you can see the influence of both traditional Japanese building techniques and Chinese architecture design, and according to experts the inside is similarly constructed.

Unfortunately the inner areas are closed off to the public, but even just the outside is a wonder to behold and I recommend taking some time to check it out if you’re in the area.

Photo Spot, The Floating Torii Gate

Interestingly, the sign in front of Gojūnotō reads that the tower is 29.3m(96.1ft), however it’s actual height is 27.6m(90.6ft).

When taking pictures, if you get too close you won’t be able to capture the entire tower.

That’s why I recommend taking a photo from near the floating torii gate.

Gojūnotō will look a bit smaller from this angle, but you can get a great shot of Itsukushima Shrine’s cloister with Gojūnotō in the background.

However, the best shots can only be taken at low tide so be sure to check the tide forecast for the day in order to get the timing right.

Address 1-1 Miyajima-cho, Hatsukaichi-shi(map)
Closest Station 14mins walk from Miyajima Pier
Website Website 
Entrance Fee Free

The 857 Tatami Mats of Senjōkaku

Let’s move on to talk about the building adjacent to Gojūnotō, Senjōkaku.

Its official name is Toyokuni Shrine, but because there are many shrines with the same name throughout Japan most people refer to it as Senjōkaku.
It is famous for the fact that Hideyoshi Toyotomi, one of Japan’s “great unifiers” during the Sengoku period, ordered its construction.

Toyotomi suddenly died just before completion, leaving it incomplete to this day.

Senjōkaku is the largest building on Miyajima, and inside is a vast, open room that stretches across 857 tatami mats.
It’s possible that during the Edo period, locals would come here to enjoy a cool evening.

When I went to visit the shrine, it was the middle of the hottest part of summer and I got the impression that many people were there to escape the heat.

Don’t forget to relax, catch your breath, and spend some time looking out over the view from the hill that Senjōkaku stands upon.

Entrance to Senjōkaku

While you cannot go inside Gojūnotō, you can enter Senjōkaku for a small fee (see below).

Buy a ticket at the door, take off whatever footwear you’re wearing, and then you can go inside.

Incidentally, because Senjōkaku is a temple, you can get your fortune told!
Try your luck and see what you get!

Address 1-1 Miyajima-cho, Hatsukaichi-shi(map)
Closest Station 14 mins walk from Miyajima Pier
Open 8:30am – 5:00pm
Open 12:00am – 6:00pm on New Year’s Day
Website Website 
Entrance Fee
Elementary and Junior High Students: ¥50
Others: ¥100

Gojūnotō and Senjōkaku are in close proximity to Itsukushima Shrine.

They are both magnificent buildings to behold, but be sure to take a minute to enjoy the view from the hill they sit on as well!