The other day I had the occasion to spend a day in Gotemba City and took the opportunity to visit its main Shinto Shrine, namely Niihashi Sengen Shrine/新橋浅間神社!
It is a big shrine indeed with the full regalia, including these ancient stone lanterns at the very entrance marked by the first torii gate!
A long (by Shizuoka standards) stone-paved lane leads to the shrine!
The second toriii gate!
The first pair of komainu/lion guards is pretty ancient!
It has its forepaw settled atop a young lion, a bit unusual although I have found a few such in Shizuoka Prefecture!
What is unusual is that his companion also has a paw rested atop a younger lion guard!
I wonder why someone has put a shell on both pedestals?
The place even has a small pond with sacred carps!
The roofed hand washing stone basin!
Complete with a dragon water spout!
Another small shrine behind the stone basin!
Quite a few cherry trees were stating blooming inside the shrine grounds!
The haiden/shrine for the worshipers!
Usually this type of building is used either as a stage for the shrine festival or as a storeroom for portable shrines!
The closed-mouth lion guard!
With its forepaw atop a young lion guard!
Its open-mouthed companion!
But with its paw resting upon a sphere!
I’ve already noticed that same lion guards combination at an old shrine in Shizuoka City, but it a bit unusual!
I actually found these two lions are very new!
The design of their tails is certainly modern!
More cherry blossoms!
The water from this sacred source comes directly from nearby Mount Fuji!
The honden/worshipers’ hall!
With its shimenawa/rice straw garland!
The money-offerings box!
Moving to the haiden/deity abode behind the honden!
The haiden with its roofed corridor!
Overlooked by ancient cedar trees!
Made a point to taste the water f the sacred source before leaving! Beautiful water, actually! No wonder people gather to collect a lot of it!
Good-bye Niihashi sengen Shrine!
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