Kyoto/ Fushimi Inari-Taisha was the first family vacation we ever took, and one of my personal favorites. Isaac was only 6 months old but we knew that we only had 2 summers left to really take advantage of living in Japan and to see as much of it as possible. So we decided to be spontaneous, booked tickets, and very tiny hotel ( Toms head almost touched the ceiling) and we were off!
The first place we went to in Kyoto that absolutely amazed me, was Fushimi Inari-taisha (Torri Gates).
Not only was it just the pure beauty of these shrines, but how many there were! It was like nothing I had ever seen before.
The bright orange color (and I mean bright), the way they were perfectly spaced making it appear you were in an orange tunnel of kanji.
When walking in one direction you could only see orange posts and wouldn’t even know that there was kanji on the other side, just to turn around and be blown away by the detailed writing on the backside!
It was just such a peaceful place, you could walk in it for hours just listening to the birds, it was never-ending.
I think another thing that really got me about the beauty of this shrine, was the simplicity of it. I mean, it’s literally just wooden posts lined up. There is a shrine that is made out of GOLD and it isn’t even as beautiful as the Fushimi Inari-Taisha shrine…why is that? I have no clue.
The Fushimi Inari-taisha shrines are the head shrines for the God Inari or the God of rice. Merchants and manufacturers have traditionally worshiped Inari as the patron of business.
So each of the torii at Fushimi Inari-Taisha has been donated by a Japanese business. The earliest structures were built in 711 on the Inariyama hill in southwestern Kyoto, but the shrine was re-located in 816 on the request of the monk Kūkai. The main shrine structure was built in 1499.
Not only was this shrine incredible to look at, but its rich history is what made it just as beautiful to behold.
Traveling with a baby
Let me tell you, traveling with a 6-month-old baby is not ideal. Actually, the least ideal thing possible. Especially in the middle of summer, outside, & carrying them up against your chest all day long while basically hiking.
BUT, Isaac was thankfully extremely cooperative and quiet the entire time.
Now that I look back on it, it was the perfect time to travel with him.
He was small enough to be in a carrier so that meant we were hands-free 95% of the time. We didn’t need to bring extra things like a stroller because we were carrying him, he couldn’t walk therefore he didn’t want to walk.
We were just really thankful that it was easier than we thought!
Plus, Japanese people LOVE American babies, so he had a lot of extra attention and love.
I look forward to the day I go back and see Fushimi Inari-Taisha again…
Check out my thoughts on our trip to India!