Thursday, December 2, 2010
Itsukushima Shrine, Hiroshima
Miyajima (also known as Itsukushima), measuring 9 kilometers (5.6 miles) in length and 6 kilometers (3.7 miles) in width, is an island in Hiroshima Bay. With Itsukushima Shrine standing in an inlet backed by the surrounding mountains soaring steeply from the coast, the island is known as one of the three most scenic places in Japan along with Matsushima in Miyagi Prefecture and Ama-no-hashidate in Kyoto Prefecture. Since ancient times, the island of Miyajima itself has been worshipped as a god, and living there was prohibited. Even today, Miyajima is considered to be sacred and some of the ancient rules such as no cultivation or burials on the island still remain.