Fushimi Inari Taisha (伏見稲荷大社 entrance fee: 0 yen ) is located near JR Nara Line Inari station (5 mins from JR Kyoto station, 140 yen) and Keihan’s Fushimi Inari (Only convenient if you are coming from south of Kyoto).
It is every bit worth the visit for the amazing scenery: both natural and man-made. This shrine is dedicated to Inari, god of rice. Foxes are the messengers of Inari and are seen at every shrine dedicated to Inari (approx. 40,000 Inari shrines exist in Japan) . You’ll notice the fox theme runs strong (especially around the souvenir shops that are lined up outside of the shrine).
The most striking part of Fushimi Inari is the trail up to the mountain, past the main shrine complex.
It’s hard to miss the trail because there are literally about a thousand bright orange tori gates forming the path. The tori gates are put up by people or companies that donated a certain amount to the shrine.
After the walk up the path you will be high enough to enjoy a good view of Kyoto. If you want to walk it all it might take several hours. Running the whole course is not advised…
You can also visit the shrine at night, it is eerily beautiful but maybe also a bit scary and extremely dark.
Recently an anime aired called, “Inari Kon Kon.” Fushimi Inari appears in the story…as the name of the main character. It looks like a cute anime, you should check it out if you want to see Kyoto via the animated world!
There are a lot of stray cats along the path. Here is one taking a drink from the shrine’s water basin (you use it to purify yourself before going into a shrine)