garden, architecture, art

Yushima Tenjin Shrine

If you are going to take an entrance examination, you should visit this place! The attractions of Yushima Tenjin

There are entrance exams everywhere all over the world. Not only Japan but also China and Korea have the “entrance examination race,” many people hope desperately to pass the exams.

At Yushima Tenjin, “Sugawara no Michizane” is enshrined; therefore, it is visited by many exam candidates. Do you know that Yushima Tenjin is widely known as a “power spot” ?

It is said that it also has an effect on a lottery, romance and recovery from illness. This article introduces Yushima Tenjin which has a lot of appealing points.

This article is for people

・who want to know its characteristic

・who want to learn more about Yushima Tenjin

It is very popular among foreigners! What is Yushima Tenjin?

Yushima Tenjin is a famous sightseeing spot which is visited by many foreigners. It is easy to access, as it takes 35 minutes by train, from Shinjuku or Shibuya.

Since “Sugawara no Michizane,” a god of learning, is enshrined it is a place for exam candidates to visit both inside and outside of Japan.

Yushima Tenjin is a shrine which was established by the name of Emperor Yuryaku  in 458. A god Ame-no-tajikarao and Sugawara no Michizane, a god of learning, are enshrined.

Although it was called Yushima shrine or Yushima Tenjin until 2000, it is now called Yushima Tenman-gu.

What is the benefit of the god?

 Ame-no-tajikarao and Sugawara no Michizane are enshrined at Yushima Tenmangu-gu. Let’s see their blessing.

The benefits of Ame-no-tajikarao

・development of sports’ ability

・protection from bad luck and danger

・improvement of an artistic skill

・huge harvest

・good fortune

・prayer for victory

Since Ame-no-tajikarao is “a god of victory,” it is now visited by athletes and people who have some game.

Ame-no-tajikarao appears as “a god of the earth” in Japanese myth. Ame-no-tajikarao is known as he pulled out  Amaterasu Okami, who withdrew into the cave because she was shocked at moving of Susano, then he restored the sun to this world.

It is said that Ame-no-tajikarao is a god of victory and good fortune since ancient times; therefore, Oda Nobunaga believed in Ame-no-tajikarao.

The benefits of Sugawara no Michizane

・success in an entrance exam

・academic achievement

Sugawara no Michizane is said to be “a god of learning” and to have benefits for “success in an entrance exam” and “academic achievement.”

Therefore, many exam candidates and job hunting students come to visit. Yushima Tenmangu-gu is a very good fortune place because both a victory god, Ame-no-tajikarao, and a learning god are enshrined.

It is the best place to visit before any games and examinations.

There is a “Plum Festival” which more than 450,000 people visit.

The “Plum Festival” is held from the beginning of February to the middle of March. It is so famous that more than 450,000 people visit this festival every year. Moreover the tree age is around 100, thus we can see beautiful scenery with 20 kinds of plum trees.

One of the features of the plum is that 80% of it is white blossom. 80% of white and 20% of pink plum make the contrast attractive.

The plum in Yushima Tenjin has a long history since the Edo period; furthermore, the “Plum Festival” started in 1958. Here is the song to show its popularity among many people in the past.

It means

“When the east wind blows, please send the smell of the plum to my place. Don’t forget the spring even though I’m not here.”

This song was sung by Sugawara no Michizane when he left to Dazaifu from Kyoto. It is nice to visit there to see the plum with long history and the tradition.

What are the popular spots inside Yushima Tenjin?

Although many tourists visit Yushima Tenjin, here are the three places which are especially popular among them.

1. Front Torii made of copper


3.Shinto shrine

Let’s check them one by one

1. the Front Torii made of copper

This Torii is a front Torii of Yushima Tenman-gu.

It is the oldest Torii made of copper in Tokyo; moreover, it is a tangible cultural asset.

How about touching and taking pictures of it so that you can feel the history?

2. Houmotsuden

There is a Houmotsuden inside the shrine. Mikoshi, which is used at the festival, and some historical things are exhibited.

You can learn the history from the art of Sugawara no Michizane which is exhibited underground. The appearance has fine carving; in addition, the inside is an interesting space, so it is popular among tourists.

Please be careful since it would take your time and money.

3. Shinto shrine

Shinto shrine in Yushima Tenman-gu has an unique structure.

It is a Gongen Zukuri that a main shrine and a front shrine are connected with the building named Heiden. Gongen Zukuri is used in the temples and the shrines which were established by the government during the Edo period.

We can also see this structure with the temples and the shrines which were built during the Edo period like Nikko Tosho-gu.

The present Shinto shrine was reconstructed in 1995 and it has a Souhinoki Zukuri. The roof’s triangle part (Tsuma) size is bigger than the Gongen Zukuri building.

Inside the shrine, you can see the ceiling painting of a dragon by Matsuo Toshio.

Yushima Tenjin is easy to access. If you have any competitions in the future, you should visit!

As I mentioned above, you can easily get to Yushima Tenjin in 35 minutes from Shinjuku or Shibuya. It is quite nice to visit “Plum Festival” during the spring season. You can see beautiful plums there.

Yushima Tenjin is the best place not only for exam candidates but also for people, who will start a big business, or who have some competitions. Why don’t you visit this place and get blessings?

Auther:Mamiko Kusano

CREAZIONE Co.Ltd. Director
From Tokyo
2006 Established CREAZIONE Co. Ltd. I mainly work on branding, digital branding, space design, and furniture design.