Kogarashi Shrine (Shizuoka, Japan)

It’s not a common tourist spot, but I’mma tell you all about Kogarashi Shrine in Shizuoka City.

It was early May when my friend and I traveled across much of Japan during the unprecedented, extremely rare ten-day Golden Week holidays this year. We went to several cities for a day or two each, without much of a plan or much research ahead of time. Probably not the kind of travel people should normally do, but hey.

In Shizuoka, we stayed for two nights at a really small hostel, the only one listed on Hostel World in the whole city. It was really nice. Though it was about thirty minutes from the main city, it was in a great spot and a nice little town in the outskirts that reminded me a lot of my hometown back in America.

I’m not cropping out the thumb

Neither my friend nor I noticed it when we arrived at night, but when we departed the next morning, we noticed that right near this hostel was something quite peculiar:

Is that a… holy crud, that’s a shrine, isn’t it?!

That, my dear readers, is Kogarashi Shrine (木枯神社), a beautiful, basically abandoned shrine out in the middle of nowhere, literally in the middle of a small river. Even in the spring before rainy season, the waters were still too high to pass, and we had to briefly wade through the water to get to this tiny island.

Yeah, we went there. When you see a wonder like this, you don’t just look at it. Just like the great Todd Howard says, you see that island? You can go there.

Turns out the view from the island is pretty gorgeous too.
Approaching Kogarashi Shrine…
This is some Legend of Zelda stuff here… It’s like you climb these stairs and enter a stealth loading screen. I’ve GOT to see what’s at the top.
And here it is. Super tiny, completely encased in a small forest. It’s like its own little world.
Yeah, you can tell this shrine is either abandoned, or almost abandoned. The upkeep on this place is practically zero.
kogarashi shrine
kogarashi shrine
kogarashi shrine
kogarashi shrine
The front door is locked… I wonder…
kogarashi shrine
kogarashi shrine
Oh wow it’s just a storage house.
kogarashi shrine
A look from in front of the shrine.

I can’t really describe the atmosphere in this shrine, except that it was fairly fantastic. Gorgeous. Quiet. A little bit lonely. It all mixed up together into… Whatever Kogarashi Shrine is.

As far as I could find, no other English language website has ever covered this place, which is sad because this is the coolest shrine ever. If you’re ever in Japan, you better go to Shizuoka and visit this place!

kogarashi shrine

Read my other blog posts! I have a ton of them, including a whole category about Japan-related posts.

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